Slip And Fall Accidents
Las Vegas Slip And Fall Attorneys
Most people have, at one point or another, fallen to the ground unexpectedly. Thankfully, most such falls do not result in any significant injuries and people simply continue with their day. While most falls are unexpected and unforeseeable, that is not always the case. Sadly, some businesses fail to prioritize the safety of their customers by allowing things they know are likely to cause their guests to fall to go unaddressed and uncorrected. For example, businesses know that things like torn carpet, uneven flooring, debris on the floor, and puddles, all pose a risk to their guests. Businesses know the risks these hazards pose, yet they often ignore them, even after being notified by other customers. Such businesses should be held responsible for the injuries their customers sustain.
At SJW, we understand that getting your life back on track after being injured due to a fall, whether caused by slipping, tripping, or otherwise, can be difficult. Our attorneys will work with you to ensure you receive the proper medical attention you need and the best possible result for your case. If you have questions and would like to speak with an attorney, please give us a call. Or, if you prefer to stop by, feel free to do so for a free consultation. Whether over the phone or in-person, our experienced attorneys are available to talk to you about your options.
Where Do Slip And Falls Occur?
A fall due to a slip or trip hazard can happen almost anywhere. However, we have found that these hazards tend to be more prevalent in certain places. As a result, it is more common to fall in certain types of locations. Also, the characteristics of some businesses make it not only more likely that a person may fall, but also more likely that they will be injured. Some common types of businesses where falls occur, whether from slipping or tripping, include:
- Hotels, often in the shower
- Retail and Grocery Stores
- Family Fun Centers
- Trampoline Parks
- Parking Lots
If you fell at one of these types of businesses and sustained an injury, the SJW team is here to assist you. Call or come by and speak with one of SJW’s injury attorneys now for assistance with your slip and fall accident-related claim.
What To Do After A Slip And Fall Or trip And Fall Accident
Do Not Get Up After A Fall Without Assistance
Many people feel embarrassed after falling in a public place, such as a grocery store or restaurant. That feeling is a normal response and, because of that embarrassing feeling, people often try to quickly get up after a fall. However, in doing so, you may aggravate your injuries. It is usually best to wait for someone to assist you before typing to get up, and if you think you may have been seriously injured, wait and ask for medical assistance. Also, no one should feel embarrassed after falling due to a hazard a business had on its property. This is especially true when it is the type of hazard that was bound to cause someone to fall, such as when a business ignores an uneven step, fails to clean up a puddle, or leaves floors slippery after cleaning. Such falls could have been prevented had the business acted to address the hazard.
Request Medical Assistance
If you feel you may have been seriously injured and cannot safely get up, request medical assistance and wait for paramedics to arrive. They will be able to assess your injuries and transport you to a hospital if needed. Even if you have already gotten up, if you think you are injured after your fall, you should still request medical assistance. Sometimes, the shock and adrenaline right after a fall may mask the severity of your injuries, even if you have a serious injury, such as a head injury, you may not experience pain right away. For this reason, it is best to wait for medical professionals to evaluate and assist you.
Report The Incident Right Away
If you were hurt in a fall at a business, it is very important that you report it to a staff member as soon as possible. Often, falls are not reported for several days, if reported at all. Failing to report a fall can make it much more difficult to prove your case later and could result in more people getting injured from the same hazard. Once a business is aware that someone has fallen and been injured on their property, they have an obligation to preserve the evidence related to that fall, including any surveillance video of the incident and other important information. If your fall is not reported, the business may fail to keep any such evidence. If you did not file a report or otherwise notify the business of your fall while you were still there, you should inform them as soon as possible.
Of course, you can always call or come by and speak with an injury attorney at SJW for answers to your slip and fall accident-related questions.
Take Pictures Of The Incident Area
If you are able to do so or have someone that can do it for you, you should try to take pictures of the location of the fall, including the areas around it. If possible, take pictures at various angles including close-ups of any substance or debris you may have slipped on or uneven surfaces you see. Make sure to also take pictures of any warning signs nearby, including photos capturing the distance between any signs and the exact location of your fall. Business and property owners may rush to have the area of your fall cleaned or blocked off right after your fall. This may be to hide the condition of the floor at the time of your fall or it may be a well-meant attempt to prevent another injury, either way, there may be no other evidence of what caused your fall. Also, many of the warning signs that are commonly used, like a wet floor sign, are portable and may be moved shortly after your incident. Taking photos of the property conditions before they do so may be the only proof of what caused your fall.
Speak With Any Witnesses
If there is anyone who witnessed the fall, be sure to take down their name and contact information to be included in the incident report. Keep a copy of this information for your records in case it is needed down the road.
Document Your Injuries
Documenting all of your injuries immediately after the fall and in the days that follow, will provide proof to the insurance companies and their lawyers, resulting in a better outcome of your case. The best way to do so is to see a medical professional and carefully describe your injuries. In addition, it is sometimes beneficial to keep a log or journal of any pain you are experiencing. If you chose to do so, note what you are doing to treat the pain (such as ice, Tylenol, etc.) and describe how the injuries are affecting your daily life. Also, if your injuries are visible, take photographs that reflect your injuries.
If you went to an emergency room or quick care after your fall (if you haven’t and you are hurt, we recommend you do so right away) and your doctor recommended that you follow up with your primary care doctor or a specialist, you should do so as soon as possible. This is the only way to ensure you get the medical care you need and that your injuries are properly diagnosed and documented.
If you have significant injuries, you may need to see several different doctors. As medical appointments can take up a great deal of your time, it may be difficult to attend them all. However, missing or postponing visits may make it more difficult to prove the extent of your injuries and, more importantly, delay your recovery. So, to the extent possible, attempt to attend all follow up appointments.
Some of the typical injuries associated with slip or trip and falls include:
- Back Injuries
- Neck Injuries like whiplash
- Wrist and Shoulder Injuries
- Knee and Ankle Injuries including sprains, strains, & rolls
- Hip Injuries
- Bruises and Lacerations
- Head Injuries including Concussions
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
Do Not Post Anything About The Fall On Social Media
For many of us, the easiest way to keep in touch with our friends and family is by updating them about significant events through social media. However, if you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, or any other type of accident, the insurance company that is liable for your injuries may try to use any social media posts against you. Insurance companies and their attorneys will frequently search through your profiles to find any mention of the accident and use it against you any way they can, and they can often access profiles that are set to private. Even if there is an honest explanation as to why the posted picture or comment is not inconsistent with the injuries you are claiming, they will try to argue otherwise. For this reason, it is always best to refrain from speaking publicly about your fall until after your case has been closed.