Slip and Fall
Matthews North Carolina personal injury and auto accident attorneys and Charlotte North Carolina personal injury and auto accident and motorcycle accident attorneys.
Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents occur everyday in places all around North Carolina.
A personal injury case stems from a slip and fall accident that occurs on someone else’s property, which comes under the umbrella of premises liability. If someone slips and falls on premises that are owned or maintained by someone else, then there may be grounds to file a claim for compensation of any injuries sustained as a result of that slip and fall accident. Any dangerous conditions or negligence on behalf of the owner of the property can result in the owner being legally responsible for any harm caused due to those conditions or to negligence. Slip and Fall accidents, can happen just about anywhere, on managed or owned premises. They can also occur in public places such as:
- Shopping malls,
- Community pools,
- Work buildings,
- Gas stations, etc.
In many cases people sustain injury from slip and fall accidents through no fault of their own.
The cause of the injury can often be attributed to:
- Wet flooring,
- Loose or torn carpeting,
- A step with no warning,
- Broken sidewalk,
- Manholes with no warnings,
- Uneven ground or level changes with no warning.
In France v. Winn-Dixie Supermarkets Inc., the North Carolina Court of Appeals ruled that a store owner does not insure customers against slipping and falling. To hold the owner liable, plaintiff must show that defendant either:
- negligently created the condition causing the injury, or
- negligently failed to correct the condition after actual or constructive notice of its existence.'' France v. Winn-Dixie Supermarkets Inc., 70 N.C. App. 492, 492, 320 S.E.2d 25, 25 (1984)
Immediate Steps to Take following a Slip and Fall accident
The first steps you take following a slip-and-fall accident are crucial. The main part of proving slip-and-fall liability requires that there was a dangerous condition that caused you to fall, and that the owner knew about it.
If this was the case, here are the initial vital steps that you should take after a slip-and-fall accident:
- Get medical help as soon as possible. Your health should be your number one priority. Plus, you will need to have your injuries documented to receive compensation for your medical bills.
- Immediately report the accident to the store manager, landlord, homeowner, or person in charge of the facility where you fell. If you fell in a business or on a rental property, the manager or landlord should take a report of the accident. If you are busy being treated by emergency medical personnel, call back to make sure they recorded an accident report. Obtain a copy of any existing slip and fall accident report before leaving the scene, even if the accident was documented by someone other than a police officer.
- If you slip or trip and fall on a homeowner’s property, limit talking to them as much as possible. You can tell them you fell, but don’t get emotional or angry. Avoid arguing, and focus on the most important thing – getting treatment for your injuries.
- Take photos of the exact location where you fell, and of any conditions that may have contributed to or caused your slip and fall accident. Take notes of any conditions, the time of the accident, etc. These photos are very important to determine who’s to blame (depending on who owns the property) and the condition that caused your injuries. For example, a homeowner could shovel and salt his or her sidewalk within hours of your slip and fall accident; if there are no photos proving that the sidewalk was untreated, it can be hard to prove your slip and fall case. If you fall on a sidewalk close to a property line, it’s important to know exactly where you fell, and on whose property.
- Collect the names, addresses, and phone numbers of any witnesses.
- Place the shoes and clothing that you were wearing at the time of the accident in a safe storage place.
- Contact an attorney before you talk to the insurance company or sign any papers. Otherwise, you may give up your rights to be compensated for pain and suffering, medical bills, and lost wages. Many insurance companies offer to pay your medical bills and want you to sign papers that basically state you will not file a claim against them. However, these “medical bills” may be for initial treatment only. What if you will need surgery? What if your injuries are permanent? What if you have missed work time? The bottom line – contact Semirog Law Firm, before it’s too late.
If you were hurt in a slip and fall accident, you should immediately reach out to a skilled attorney before accepting any offers from any party involved.
At Semirog Law we will fight hard on your behalf to secure fair compensation for your medical expenses, personal losses, pain, suffering, job and wage losses, and other damages.
Call our firm for a FREE consultation and case evaluation. We will gladly answer ALL of your questions regardless of how much time it takes!
Index of Relevant Terms:
- Absolute Divorce
- Contributory Negligence
- Imputed Negligence
- Defenses to a Negligence Lawsuit
- Driving and Texting in North Carolina
- Emotional Distress
- Punitive Damages
- Res Ipsa Loquitur
- Short Sale
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Truck Accidents
- Wrongful Death
- Wrongful Discharge from Employment