Gathering Evidence After a Slip and Fall
During the holiday season, it’s likely that you’ll be out-and-about more than usual. With shopping, traveling to spend the holiday with relatives, or showing visiting guests around your city, there are plenty of opportunities for adventure. Unfortunately, this also means that there are many opportunities for slip and fall accidents.
What Is A Slip and Fall?
The term slip and fall is somewhat self-explanatory. If you slip, trip, fall, or otherwise injure yourself on someone else’s property, it is a slip and fall case. Often, these accidents are the result of improper maintenance or a lack of safety precautions. Common causes of slips or falls include uneven sidewalks, badly marked staircases or steps, and foreign substances on a floor, like a spilled drink, or during the winter season, even snow or ice. Injuries can occur anywhere, but during the holiday season, they are most likely to happen at a store or other business establishment.
While the term may be easy to explain, the process that follows is anything but simple. Florida Statutes requires an injured person to “prove that the business establishment had actual or constructive knowledge of the dangerous condition and should have taken action to remedy it.” This is easier said than done. If a person falls on a slippery floor, for example, they may need immediate care. Once they leave the scene, the store owner may clear away any evidence of the accident. They may even deny that it ever happened. This is an unfortunate reality of premise liability cases.
Due to this issue, it’s critical to gather evidence at the scene. If you can, take pictures of the surrounding area. You should also take pictures of your injuries. If you are too badly injured to take the pictures yourself, ask someone else, like a friend who is with you or even a bystander, to do it for you. Getting medical attention is obviously important, but if you want to pursue a slip and fall case, evidence is very important, too.
If there are witnesses to your accident, get their names and numbers. If necessary, they may be able to back up your claims later. When there is little evidence, a slip and fall case quickly becomes a “your word against theirs” scenario. This is why witnesses are vital.
Remember, after an injury on someone else’s property, you must prove that either
- A property owner should have recognized the dangerous condition and removed or repaired the potential danger, but did not
- A property owner actually caused the dangerous condition
This can be complicated, but with quick acting, winning a slip and fall case is not impossible.
The attorneys at Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes represent those involved in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and other types of personal injury matters. Our firm is one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Tampa Bay. There are no attorneys’ fees or costs unless we prevail for you. Call our office 24 hours a day at 727-796-8282 or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.