In the immediate aftermath of any serious injury, it can seem impossible to think clearly. Slip and fall accidents are unexpected—amid the shock and confusion, it is easy to overlook the fact that you might need to file an injury claim or lawsuit to cover your medical bills, lost income, and other damages.
However, there are eight crucial steps to take after a slip and fall on commercial property to protect your right to seek compensation from the liable party. We have outlined them below, along with what an attorney from our firm could do to help.
What You Should do Soon After a Slip and Fall Occurs
Although seeking medical attention should be your top priority, it is important to gather evidence at the scene if you are able. Here are eight tips to keep in mind if you slip and fall on commercial or private property:
- Thoroughly check your body for injuries: A serious fall can damage any part of your body, and even minor symptoms could indicate a major complication.
- Call 911: If you decide to file a claim or lawsuit, a police report could be an essential piece of evidence. It will contain details about the time and location of your fall, the hazard that caused it, and whether you suffered any injuries.
- Record the witnesses’ contact information: Our attorneys could use witness testimonies to prove the property owner’s negligence and liability.
- File a report with the manager: Before you leave the scene, file a written incident report, and give it to the manager. Make sure you get a copy.
- Take photos: Pictures of your injuries and the hazard that caused your fall can support your case if the property owner denies liability.
- Request CCTV camera footage: It is common for commercial properties to have CCTV cameras. Ask to see the footage, record it with your cell phone, and request a copy. A lawyer from our firm can also request this footage if you are unable to retrieve it.
- Consult your doctor: Do not put off your doctor’s visit. If you wait too long to undergo a medical evaluation, an insurance company might argue that something else caused your injuries or you contributed to the severity of your situation.
- Consider hiring a personal injury attorney: A personal injury lawyer from our firm can handle the legal aspects of your case so that you can focus on recovering from your injuries.
For a free legal consultation, call 337-221-9907
An attorney Could Help You Recover Slip and Fall Damages
It’s easy to underestimate the damage a fall can cause until you experience one firsthand. The National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI) estimates that falls contribute to nearly 1 million emergency room visits every year.
Brain trauma and broken bones are just some debilitating injuries that can occur after a fall, and surgery and rehabilitation costs add up quickly. Additionally, if you miss work to recover, you might have concerns about missing income and possibly falling into debt.
Unpaid medical bills are the leading cause of bankruptcy in the United States. If a commercial property owner’s negligence caused or contributed to your injury, you could recover your losses through a premises liability claim or lawsuit. However, recovering compensation under Louisiana law can be complex – this is where a personal injury lawyer can help.
When Property Owners Are Liable for Slip and Fall Accidents in Louisiana
If you are thinking about taking legal action to recover compensation after a slip and fall in Louisiana, there are important things to consider as you do so. First, as common as these incidents are, they require more than just showing that a slip and fall occurred on commercial property.
The main thing you will need to show is that your accident occurred because of the property owner’s negligence. Specifically, you must establish that the liable party failed to meet their duty of care, which is to keep the premises free of dangers that could cause a slip or trip and fall.
Property Owners Must Tell Guests About Any Dangers on Their Sites
Louisiana law requires property owners to keep their sites safe for invited guests and other authorized visitors. They are also required to address any hazards in a reasonable timeframe. If they can’t for some reason, they must adequately warn their guests about unsafe conditions that exist on the property at the time it is occupied.
Proving the Property Owner’s Negligence
If a property owner fails to meet any of their duties under the law, they could be held legally liable for any injuries that occur as a result – including fatal ones. Still, despite the laws in place, the victim or their family must prove the property owner’s negligence.
This is where a lawyer with our firm can help, as proving negligence can be challenging. Based on the facts, circumstances, and evidence in your case, we will work to establish that the property owner:
- Created, knew about, or reasonably should have known about the preventable danger on the premises
- Breached their legal duty of care to address the hazard promptly
- Brought damages upon you that warrant compensation
We Must Have Evidence That Proves Your Slip and Fall and Why It Happened
When you hire us, our team will look at any evidence you have and collect additional proof if needed. This evidence can include:
- Photos or videos of the location of your slip and fall accident
- Photos or videos of your injuries
- Copies of your medical bills and/or records to show the extent of your injuries
- Proof that you lost income due to missing work during your recovery
- Recorded witness testimony that can support your injury claim or lawsuit
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You Have One Year to File a Slip and Fall Case in Louisiana
Generally, under CC Art. 3492, you have one year from the date your slip and fall accident occurred to pursue a lawsuit. If you miss the deadline, you likely will not be able to proceed with your case. You can still recover an award if you are found partially at fault in the accident, but your percentage of fault will reduce it, per CC Art. 2323.
Call Us Today for Your Free Consultation
If you were injured in a slip and fall accident, the attorneys at Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers are standing by to take over your case and seek the financial recovery you may be due. We are a contingency firm, which means we can start on your case as soon as possible without an upfront payment from you—we receive payment only if you recover compensation in your case.
If you would like to discuss your case with our team, contact Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers. Our legal team will gather evidence, interview witnesses, and help you fight for the maximum settlement. If your case goes to trial, our lawyers will also represent you through these proceedings. You can learn more about our services during a free consultation when you call (337) 777-7777.