A slip and fall could lead to substantial injuries. If it is a result of a property owner’s negligence, you may be owed significant monetary damages for the injuries you endured. Identifying negligence requires specific types of evidence and conformance with the rules of legal procedures. Proving that property hazards are the cause of your fall require acute attention to detail and knowledge of complicated legal rules.
An experienced Delaware County slip and fall lawyer could help present your case for consideration and help seek financial compensation. With a dedicated local personal injury attorney by your side, you may have the resources you need to get the outcome that you desire.
Different Types of Falling Accidents
Slip, trip, and fall accidents are not uncommon. When a significant injury occurs as the result of a serious fall, it is important to determine whether it was instigated by another person’s negligence. When it is, injuries that have been sustained by the incident may be compensable through a civil lawsuit.
Some common causes of slipping and falling incidents include, but are not limited to:
- Spills and melted liquids on store floors
- Snow and ice accumulations
- Defective staircases
- Uneven surfaces, trip hazards, and holes
- Dangerous entranceways
- Loose carpet
- Protruding nails or other hazards
These types of dangers could lead to a very serious accident and subsequent injuries. Speaking with a Delaware County attorney could help someone recover compensation after slipping and falling.
Open and Obvious Doctrine Under State Law
A defendant who faces a trip and fall lawsuit is likely to search for a legal defense in an effort not to pay for the claimant’s injuries. One common defense raised by defendants is the Open and Obvious Doctrine. With this doctrine, the defendant argues that the danger that caused the incident was obvious and visible to people, and the plaintiff should have avoided the hazard.
The defense requires a showing that the hazard would have been noticeable, had the injured person paid an appropriate amount of attention to their surroundings. This involves demonstrating that the tripping hazard was easy to see, as well as readily apparent to a reasonable observer.
This doctrine is especially common in slippery substance cases, such as those related to ice or puddles. Defendants may seek to avoid payment of a person’s claim by raising this defense. A qualified attorney in the area understands how to challenge this defense to continue to seek compensation for someone injured in a slip and fall accident.
Comparative Negligence in Slip and Fall Lawsuits
In lawsuits like this, a defendant may claim that the plaintiff was at least partly at fault for their own injuries. 42 Pennsylvania Code § 7102 outlines the state’s modified comparative negligence law. If the claimant was partly accountable for the accident—but was fifty percent or less responsible—they may still be allowed to recover compensation. If the injured person is determined to be fifty-one percent or higher for their own harm, they are not permitted to recover any compensation from the defendant.
For those who could recover under this legal mechanism, their damages are reduced by the percentage of their fault. If a plaintiff files a suit for $100,000 and is deemed to be ten percent at fault themselves, they would only be able to recover $90,000 in damages. This percentage of fault is typically determined by the jury or by the judge in a court trial.
Enlist the Guidance of a Delaware County Slip and Fall Attorney
A slip and fall accident could greatly hurt you and impact your finances as well. Time lost at work may result in great financial hardship, as could the high cost of medical bills. You may be entitled to remuneration for these costs and others, including your pain and suffering.
An experienced Delaware County slip and fall lawyer could assist you in your pursuit of financial compensation. Contact us today to learn about your unique legal options.