Slip and fall accidents are quite common, and some of these can cause serious injuries to the victims. Our Santa Ana personal injury lawyers will work with you to get the compensation you need to make up for your lost income, pay for all your medical expenses, and cater for all other damages that your injuries might have caused. When you meet with Crockett Law Group’s Santa Ana slip and fall lawyers, expect to feel welcomed and supported in your path to pursuing justice and financial recovery.
We will assume communication with the concerned insurance companies, who have probably already contacted you. We’ll also make sure that you are protected from making any kind of statements that might be detrimental to your claim.
Get in touch with our top-rated personal injury law firm today at (800) 900-9393 to schedule your free consultation with one of our experienced Santa Ana slip and fall accident lawyers.
What Are the Most Common Slip and Fall Accidents?
Not every premises liability case will be attributed to the negligence of the property owner. Many injuries are caused by preventable unsafe property conditions. Whether the accident occurs in a grocery store, a shopping mall, or any other business or personal premises, the following are some of the most common slip and fall accidents:
- Inadequate/improper maintenance or structural defects that causes cracks in the sidewalk, broken floor tiles, potholes in the streets or walkways, or torn carpeting
- Faulty escalators or broken staircases (such as missing handrails)
- Improperly lit or unlit stairways, walkways, or hallways
- Wet/slick walkways, staircases, or floors
- Failing to put up signs and/or restricting areas when there are hazardous conditions
- Spills that are not cleaned up in time inside public spaces such as hospitals, stores, care facilities, etc.
- Dangerous debris like tree branches, etc. that isn’t cleaned up in time
- Weather conditions such as snow or ice that doesn’t get salted or removed
- Improperly installed storm drains, gutters, or anti-slip devices (or failure to install them altogether) which cause hazardous conditions during heavy rains or snowfall.
If you or a loved one has suffered soft tissue damage, broken bones, brain trauma, a spinal cord injury, or other serious injuries in a slip and fall, our Santa Ana slip and fall lawyers can assist you in pursuing the justice and compensation you deserve.
How Can a Santa Ana Slip and Fall Lawyer Help Me With My Case?
Having an experienced slip and fall lawyer by your side during the entirety of your case can provide you with reassurance and peace of mind that justice will be served. We can fight for your rights and work to serve your best interests, whether it entails negotiating an out-of-court settlement or taking your court to trial.
The following are some other ways your slip and fall accident lawyer will help your case:
Our lawyers will be responsible for conducting interviews, subpoenaing available recordings, investigating the backgrounds of relevant parties, and obtaining expert record reviews.
At Crockett Law Group, we go beyond conducting interviews and securing evidence. We know that not being thorough could create an opportunity for the other party to tamper with evidence and even twist some facts. As soon as you hire us, we move to collect evidence while it’s still fresh and preserve it.
Handling Negotiations With the Defendant
This is a critical role as it will help make sure you receive the compensation amount you deserve. If you don’t have an experienced lawyer, you might be forced to accept a low-ball offer by the defendant’s insurers, as they will most likely devalue your claim or even deny it completely. Having an attorney handle the negotiations will give you a better chance of recovering the full compensation.
Representing You in Trial
Most slip and fall accident cases will settle out of court. However, some of them proceed to court, especially if your pre-trial talks and negotiations don’t yield a satisfactory resolution of your complaints.
In case yours goes to trial, our attorneys are well experienced and knowledgeable in the California court systems. This means we can ensure a favorable outcome for you by building a strong case, presenting compelling evidence, examining witnesses, and making compelling arguments before the judge or jury.
What Steps Can Be Taken to Help a Slip and Fall Case?
When you get into a slip and fall accident, the best thing you can do is be your best advocate. Here are some of the steps you can take to help your case:
Take all the photos you can at the time.
You will want to take photos of the scene of the accident to document details such as what caused your fall, such as cracked floors, spilled liquids or torn carpets, and your injuries. If possible, visit the scene of the accident the next day to ensure you didn’t miss anything before the fault is repaired.
Report the incident to a manager.
Regardless of where the slip and fall incident occurs, be it a sidewalk, a store, or a friend’s house, you should report it to the landlord, owner, or manager. Be sure to also get details of the incident in writing; ask the person in question to make a written report and request a copy before leaving.
Write down the names and phone numbers of the witnesses.
It’s also wise to obtain the contact details of the property or business owner, their insurer, and any witnesses present at the time of the accident. Witnesses will be vital when it comes to proving how the accident occurred and might even have pictures of videos that could help in case you were too hurt to take them.
If you need medical attention, get it immediately.
Although obtaining medical help is something you should do if you are injured, you want to still visit the hospital even if you don’t feel hurt or think your injuries are severe enough to warrant medical attention. This is because it will not only help officially document your injuries but also protect your health. Keep in mind that some injuries may worsen into huge problems days or weeks after the accident.
If possible, see if the problem is addressed right away.
If you figured out exactly what was the cause of your fall, you should take note of it and alert the property manager or owner to the incident and see if they can address it immediately to avoid other people getting into another slip and fall accident.
How Can a Slip and Fall Accident Be Proved?
Proving fault or liability in slip and fall cases is quite challenging, as it requires you to provide clear and compelling evidence showing negligence on the part of the property owner, or other parties such as the property manager, leasing agent, other tenants, or business owner.
The following are some of the aspects you need to prove:
The dangerous condition existed on the property.
Just because you were injured on someone else’s property doesn’t mean that the property owner is liable for your damages. You must demonstrate that the hazard existed on the property and that the hazard exposed you, an invitee, to an unreasonable level of risk of injury. Speculating about what might have caused you to fall will not meet the necessary standard – you have to identify and prove the dangerous condition.
The property owner was aware of the danger (or should have reasonably known that it exists).
Once it’s established what caused your slip and fall accident, you have to demonstrate that the property owner or manager should have reasonably known about the hazard by the time the accident occurred. You can prove this by showing employees on the property had been near the hazard and should have noticed it and removed it.
Another way to establish this is to provide evidence that the hazard was in place for such a long time that had the property owner or manager exercised a reasonable level of care, they should have discovered the danger in a property inspection and should have removed it.
The victim didn’t know about the hazard (no signs had been posted and they couldn’t have seen it in time).
You also have to demonstrate that as a visitor, you had no knowledge of the existence of the hazard at the premises, and you wouldn’t have reasonably avoided it. In these cases, your lack of knowledge of the hazard matters a lot. The property owner can be held liable if they did not adequately notify or warn visitors of possible risks or hazards.
How Is Liability Determined in a Santa Ana Slip and Fall Case?
A property owner has a responsibility to maintain their premises to a reasonable standard and fix any hazards that come up promptly. This is why for most slip and fall cases, liability is often directed to the property owner. However, this is not to say it’s limited to the owner. Some other parties that could be liable include: the property manager, the business owner, a leasing agent, and other tenants.
However, they will most likely argue that you were at some kind of fault in your accident. For this reason, as part of filing the slip and fall accident injury claim, you could be asked questions like:
- Why were you on the property owner’s premises at the time of the accident? Were you a guest, a trespasser, or a licensee?
- Would another person taking reasonable caution (as long as they were not distracted) in such a situation have noticed and avoided the hazard?
- Had the property manager or owner provided a warning of the hazard that caused your slip and fall accident?
- At the time of the accident, were you engaged in any activities that might have contributed to your slip and fall injury?
To establish liability, the plaintiff will have to prove the following elements:
- Duty of care: the defendant (property owner/manager) had a duty of care to the plaintiff to keep them safe from any kinds of dangerous conditions.
- Breach of duty of care: The defendant was in breach of their duty of care by failing to keep the property safe and free from all kinds of hazards
- Causation: This breach of duty was the exact cause of your injuries
- Damages: The injuries you suffered in the accident were responsible for your damages
How Much Is My Slip and Fall Case Worth?
As much as we’d like to let you know how much you can expect to be awarded as compensation for your damages, it’s close to impossible to calculate the exact figure. This is largely because it’s hard to tell how much a case is worth without first doing a thorough review of the facts surrounding the case.
Here are some of the factors that will influence how much compensation you will receive:
- The nature and severity of your injuries
- Your age
- Your occupation and how your injuries affect your daily life
- Your prognosis and whether there were any temporary or permanent disabilities involved
- Whether you had any fault in the accident
Are There Any Time Limits for Filing a Slip and Fall Lawsuit?
California law gives you two years from the date of the accident to file a civil lawsuit. Generally speaking, if you fail to file your claim within two years after the accident, you will be forfeiting your rights to seek financial recovery in the future. While there are some exceptions to the rule, the best way to ensure you meet your deadline and preserve your right to seek compensation is to contact an experienced slip and fall accident attorney and arrange for a consultation.
Crockett Law Group: Your Local Santa Ana Slip and Fall Accident Lawyers
A slip and fall accident can have a devastating impact on your mental, physical, and emotional well-being, not only for you but also for your family and friends. You should consider retaining a slip and fall lawyer to help fight for the compensation you deserve.
At Crockett Law Group, we have extensive experience in all kinds of personal injury cases, and we can effectively and efficiently handle your slip and fall accident claim. Whether you slipped and fell on a wet floor at a private property or a grocery store, we can help.
Find out how much your claim might be worth today by contacting our office today and scheduling a free consultation with our Santa Ana slip and fall lawyers.