Pasadena, CA Slip and Fall Lawyer
Anyone can slip and fall, but some accidents are caused because a property owner does not keep the premises safe for visitors. Often, property owners do not regularly inspect their property for hazards or even fix the ones they know about.
If you have slipped and fallen, you could possibly have a legal claim. You would be best served to meet with a Pasadena, CA slip and fall lawyer at Fisher & Talwar to begin reviewing your case.
Slip and Fall Hazards
Some of the more common reasons our clients have slipped include:
- Spilled liquids on the floor
- Freshly mopped or waxed floors
- Worn carpeting
- Poor lighting
- Slick leaves or other debris in a parking lot
- Poorly designed steps or stairs
After falling, many clients suffer serious injuries, including concussions, broken bones, soft-tissue injuries, and back injuries. The elderly, in particular, can fracture a hip and end up in the hospital, which can have devastating consequences for their health. When some elderly go into the hospital after a fall they don’t come back out.
The Duty of Care
California Civil Code 1714(a) imposes legal liability for anyone injured on property due to the owner’s lack of ordinary care in keeping the property safe. This duty of care extends to people who own, occupy, lease, or otherwise control the property.
As a result of the statute, parties must inspect the property and repair any dangerous conditions, or else they must give sufficient warnings that the hazard exists. If an owner fails to discharge these duties, then they are negligent under the law and are legally responsible for the injuries that a visitor suffers.
There are some common situations where an injured person has a legal claim after a slip and fall accident:
- You go into a pharmacy to pick up a prescription. While walking down the aisle, you slip and fall on liquid that someone had spilled on the floor The liquid has been on the floor for hours but the staff on duty did not inspect the aisles or clean up the liquid. In this case, the store owner probably is responsible for your fall.
- You visit your friend. As you go to leave, you walk down the stairs which have worn carpeting and poor lighting. Because you can’t see properly, your foot slips out from under you and you take a tumble down the stairs. In this example, you might be able to sue the landlord for not keeping the common areas safe.
- You enter a government building on an errand. Someone has freshly mopped the floor but did not put up any warning signs. As a result, your feet go out from under you and land on your back. Here, the government agency might be responsible because they did not adequately warn you that the floor was wet.
Every case is different, and whether you have a claim usually depends on the unique circumstances of your case. Meet with a slip and fall attorney in Pasadena to review your case.
Compensation after a Slip and Fall
Our clients have qualified for the following compensation in the form of “damages” for:
- Medical care, including rehabilitation and future medical care for permanent injuries
- Lost wages, including lost future earning capacity if our client is permanently disabled
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Depression and other mental anguish
In a narrow range of cases, some of our clients could also qualify for punitive damages if the defendant’s conduct was reckless or intentional.
The amount our clients receive will depend on the circumstances. The more serious your injuries, then the more you can likely receive in compensation. Other factors include whether you were also careless, such as not watching where you were going, and the strength of your evidence. Instead of trying to find the “average” slip and fall settlement, meet with an attorney for an individualized review of your case.
Finding Evidence for Your Claim
To successfully sue for compensation after a slip and fall, our clients need to show that the person was in possession of the property and that they did not use reasonable care while maintaining it. Building this type of case requires solid evidence, such as proof of the hazard that caused you to slip.
For example, if you slipped on spilled liquid, then ideally you should get pictures of the liquid on the floor before it is mopped up. Use a smartphone to get at least a few pictures. Other evidence that our clients use includes eyewitness testimony and possibly surveillance video if they were injured inside a store that has closed circuit TV.
Suing the Government
If you fell on government property, then you might be able to sue them for compensation. The California Tort Claims Act, however, generally exempts the state and municipalities from lawsuits, though an exception is made if you slipped and fell on government property.
Bringing a claim against the government is complicated. There are certain deadlines you must meet and hoops you must jump through, which makes these cases different than suing your local grocery store. For example, you must first submit written notice within 6 months of your injury to the appropriate government agency. If you don’t, you can’t file a lawsuit in court. The state wants an opportunity to investigate your claim and make a possible settlement offer, hence the requirement that you provide written notice.
Bringing a Claim against a Homeowner
Many slip and fall accidents happen when visiting friends or relatives. If you were injured on their property, then the owner’s homeowners or renter’s insurance might kick in to cover compensation. However, every policy is different, and some homeowners might not have insurance.
Also, many insurance policies have low policy limits that might be inadequate to fully compensate you for your injuries. If you are permanently paralyzed, then a $100,000 policy limit will not be enough to cover your medical expenses to say nothing of lost wages and pain and suffering.
Contact a Pasadena Slip and Fall Lawyer
Fisher & Talwar is a leading personal injury law firm who has represented injured people for decades. If you have been hurt in Pasadena or Los Angeles, please contact us today. You can schedule a free consultation to meet with one of our lawyers.