Slip and fall accidents happen when we least expect them. You could be walking on the sidewalk, grocery shopping, or even heading into your office for work when you slip and suffer serious injuries. These accidents can upend your life for months by causing serious injury and a significant financial burden if you can’t work. Experiencing a slip and fall accident in Florida may leave you wondering what to do after falling and whether you can recover compensation. Read on to learn more about slip and fall accidents in Florida and how a slip and fall attorney can help you.
6 Steps: What to Do After a Slip and Fall Accident
There are several important steps to take following a slip and fall accident to preserve your rights if you decide to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible party.
- Seek medical attention. If you need emergency medical assistance, call 9-1-1 or have someone at the premises call for you. Even if you don’t go to the hospital immediately, seek a complete medical evaluation to record all your injuries and to maintain their connection to the fall.
- Report your accident. Find out the name of the property owner or business operator and file a police report. You should also complete a report with the business if they have a procedure for reporting these types of accidents.
- Gather evidence. Take photographs of the accident scene to preserve evidence. For example, slippery surfaces, poor lighting, or inadequate signage are all useful forms of evidence that help strengthen your case. You may also wish to take pictures of your injuries and any damage to your personal property.
- Get witness information. If there were witnesses to your slip and fall accident, write down their names and contact information. Your attorney will contact these witnesses to gain more information about the accident.
- Take notes. Write down your immediate recollections regarding the fall. Memories fade quickly, so write down the details leading up to, during, and after your fall to help refresh your memory later and preserve the facts surrounding the incident.
- Report to your insurance company. Even if the slip and fall accident happened on someone else’s property, report the incident to your insurance company.
The most important step is speaking to a personal injury attorney about your options. If your injuries prevented you from carrying out these steps at the time of the fall, your attorney will assist in completing them so your case can proceed without delay.
Who Is Responsible for My Harm?
Slip and fall accidents are often challenging to prove and require the assistance of a qualified attorney. While a property owner or business operator may attempt to blame you for your injuries, your attorney will work to establish the required elements of a negligence claim. These elements include the following:
- Duty—a business owner has a duty of care to keep their property reasonably safe to prevent injury to others.
- Breach—a business owner must have failed to maintain a safe condition on their property.
- Causation—this breach in their duty caused you to fall and suffer injuries.
- Damages—you suffered damages and losses due to your injuries.
Proving these elements may appear straightforward. However, it’s more challenging than one might expect and requires the help of a attorney. Without the strength of necessary evidence and a proper legal argument, you could fail to establish negligence—and that could mean losing out on the compensation you deserve.
Is There a Statute of Limitations?
A statute of limitations is set by law and provides the time that a party has to file a lawsuit. Florida’s statute of limitations for slip and fall accidents is two years from the incident date. Two years may sound like plenty of time to file your lawsuit, but allowing substantial time to pass before filing your claim can result in a weaker case. Alternatively, filing a claim for damages immediately after your accident may not be advised. Whether you will completely recover from your injuries may not be clear for months. Your personal injury attorney reviews these essential details to determine the best time to file your lawsuit.
At James Horne Law PA, our primary value is our commitment to you. We never view you as just another file. Instead, we take the time to understand your legal situation’s full extent and serious nature. We know how an accident can completely derail your life and the lives of your loved ones. Our legal team gives each case the full attention it deserves. We are skilled negotiators and litigators and don’t rest until we help you obtain the best possible result in your case. Contact us today by phone or email for a confidential consultation to learn more about how we can help.