Trip and Fall

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS ON SLIP AND FALL INJURY AND PREMISES LIABILITY

What Is Premises Liability?

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Premises liability refers to cases alleging that the owner or occupier of property, for example, a store, casino, private home, or even government building is responsible for injuries that occur on it as a result of his or her negligence. An example is a case filed by a customer who slipped, fell, and got hurt at a grocery store, restaurant, sidewalk, or apartment. Such cases can be filed against the business owner, property owner, tenant, or other persons in control of the property.

Property owners and managers have the obligation to protect their patrons and guests from dangerous conditions on their property.

There are several different types of premises liability cases.  The obvious ones are liquids on the floor causing a slip and fall but others can be the result of inadequate security and failure to protect a patron against a violent or criminal act of a third party.

If you get injured at a casino or a store because of a dangerous condition you may be able to bring a claim.  I have tried many premises liability cases and know the right experts to prove that the danger existed and that the defendant had notice.

Most people would be surprised to learn that the most common accidents in hotels today are falling in a bathtub.  Many people think that since bathtubs get wet because people take a shower and bathe in them, the fact is that they're too slippery would prevent you from bringing a case. This is not true, industry standards require a textured surface or appropriate mats which make the bathtub safe.  For example, engineering experts can measure friction co-efficient which measures how slippery the surface was either wet or dry and based on those measurements and analysis can testify with opinions that can be verified that the condition of the surface was unreasonably dangerous.

If you have been seriously injured due to a fall or due to the conduct of a third party at a restaurant, bar or other establishment you may have the right to bring a claim.  Please call me and I can discuss this with you.

Our firm recently sued Smith's supermarket in Las Vegas, Nevada, in federal court. Smith's did not own the real property or the store itself, but it leased it, and was in control of it. Smith's was responsible for everything that went on inside the property. We sued because they had left low-lying boxes in the aisle which were trip hazards. Our client, who was shopping and looking at the products on the shelves, did not notice a low box on the floor of the aisle, and she ended up falling and fracturing her arm. In our claim, we contended that the low lying box, in this case 12 inches tall, was not readily apparent to the shopper, and the shopper was distracted by the items on the shelves. Smith's was negligent in having a low object in the path of its customers.  We went to trial because Smith's did not make a reasonable settlement offer. We won the trial.

The plaintiff must prove the defendant was negligent. One way we do that is by inspecting the defendant's documents that show whether its employees properly inspected the premises for slip and fall hazards. Such documents are called sweep sheets. Sweep sheets are used to prove whether reasonable inspections were conducted on a regular basis. We also look for video evidence showing whether or not liquid was on the floor but not cleaned up in a timely manner, if the supermarket has proper staffing, and if the supermarket adequately trains it staff about safety policies.

Many kinds of premises liability cases are the result of people tripping over objects in parking lots. It is a common occurrence for people to trip over what are called parking stops, which are blocks of concrete at the end of a parking space. The issue is going to be whether or not the parking stops are really serving a necessary function in the parking lot, or if they make it unsafe by creating a trip and fall hazard. Some experts have testified that using parking stop in this day and age is negligent because there is really no need for them.  They do not serve any useful purpose, but are obstacles to walking and people constantly trip over them.

WHAT ARE OTHER TYPES OF INJURIES?

Other injuries include broken bones and head injuries. People typically use their hands to brace their falls, and wrist injuries are common, which can result in carpal tunnel problems later. You can suffer a common wrist fracture injury when you use your hand to brace yourself when you fall. Other typical injuries suffered in falls include broken legs, arms, or shoulders. Anyone not expecting to fall can be seriously injured if an unexpected trip hazard occurs.

WHY IS PROVING NEGLIGENCE IMPORTANT?

Having a serious injury is not enough to win a personal injury lawsuit. You have to prove that the defendant somehow failed to act reasonably with regard to your safety. Someone is negligent under circumstances in which a reasonable person in his or her position would not have done what he did. For example, in the Smith's case described earlier, we had to prove that a reasonable supermarket would not have left low boxes in the aisle where customers need to walk.

Our job as attorneys is to gather the facts by interviewing the witnesses, gathering the reports, looking at the physical evidence, having it analyzed by experts, doing inspections and testing, then to present the facts in a way that is most favorable to the client so that we can win the case.

WHAT IF I AM INJURED ON GOVERNMENT OR PUBLIC PROPERTY?

In California, you must make a written claim to the government entity responsible for your injury. You have six months from the date of the injury to make your claim. In Nevada, you have two years to file. If you fail to make the claim in time you will be barred from ever bringing a lawsuit.

WHY SHOULD I CHOOSE THE LAW OFFICE OF PETER GOLDSTEIN AS YOUR PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER?

Our firm has been successfully handling these types of cases for 30 years. We know how to obtain and present evidence in the most effective way. We will fight for you as effectively as possible to obtain the most favorable outcome.

The compensation you can get from a slip and fall lawsuit includes medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages if you miss work, lost earning capacity if you can't work in the future, and possibly others.

If you were injured falling on someone else's property or experience slip and fall, call our firm at (702) 474-6400 as soon as possible to set up a free case evaluation and speak with personal injury attorney Peter Goldstein.