Things To Prove To Win A Slip And Fall Injury Claim
People get caught in accidents on other people’s properties and get injured as a result. But, the factor of someone’s negligence plays a vital role here. You may want to know about your legal rights in this regard. The key issue in a slip and fall accident claim is liability, and that’s what we will discuss in this article. When you pursue a settlement or file a personal injury lawsuit, you need to prove that the property in charge was legally responsible for your injury.
The key questions in slip and fall cases are the following.
- Who are the parties potentially liable?
- Are those parties guilty of negligence?
The injured person also has to defend against the arguments of the defendant’s party. That argument may tend to show that the injured person’s carelessness caused the accident.
Theories of liability in slip and falls cases
An injured person has to prove one of the following points to hold the other party responsible for the accident.
- It is the responsibility of a property owner to recognize, remove, and repair the potential danger. But, they failed to do so. Now the question is whether the defendant had an ample opportunity to fix the problem that caused the accident.
- The property owner, in-charge, or employee was directly responsible for causing the dangerous condition that led to the accident.
Proving negligence and liability
Settlement negotiations during slip and fall cases often bring up the term “reasonable” at different stages. That is because a property owner or in-change must have failed to act as a reasonably sensible person to cause the accident. The plaintiff has to consider the following points to assess whether or not the defendant acted reasonably.
- Did the hazardous condition persist for long enough to prompt a reasonable proper owner or employee to take action and fix the problem?
- Did the property owner have a rule in place to routinely check the property for hazardous conditions? If that is the case, is there some sort of log available to check the record of the assessment conducted shortly before the accident?
- Was there a reasonable justification for creating or not fixing the dangerous condition? Did that justification still exist at the time of the accident?
- Could the hazardous condition have been made less hazardous by putting warning signs around it or relocating the hazard?
- Did the accident happen due to poor lighting or limited visibility?
Proving that you are not responsible for your injury
In a slip and fall case, the property owner may argue that the plaintiff was partially or fully responsible for the accident. Such an argument belongs to a legal concept called “comparative fault”. It is a set of rules that govern the situation when the plaintiff is at fault. That affects the plaintiff’s ability to recover compensation.
To defend your position against such arguments, you have to be ready to answer the following questions.
- Did the plaintiff engage in any activity that prevented him from noticing the danger?
- Did the plaintiff have lawful access to the area where the accident happened?
- Were there adequate warning signs placed to notify people about the danger?