Slip & Fall Accidents in Cape Coral
At Greene & Tischer, we have handled a multitude of slip and fall cases. The most common scenario is when someone goes into a store or restaurant and slips and falls due to something on the floor. The most common misconception is that the property owner is automatically liable simply because an accident occurred. Nothing could be further from the truth. You must prove that the property owner was negligent in the way the property was maintained. Because people are embarrassed or confused by the fall, crucial evidence may be lost that will prevent you from pursuing a claim. Here are some tips.
- Always look to see what caused you to fall. Was it liquid on the floor ? Was it a defective rug or floor covering ? I often talk to people who fell and when I ask them what was on the floor, the answer is that they never really looked. If that's the case, you don't have a case.
- If a liquid on the floor caused you fall, look closely at the liquid. You have to prove the substance was there long enough to put the owner on notice. So look for things such as melted ice, dirt, foot prints or cart tracks through the liquid. Touch the liquid to see if it's warm or cold. Anything to show that the liquid had been there for some period of time. Many cases have been dismissed because there was no evidence that the liquid was there long enough to put the owner on notice.
- Take pictures of what caused you to fall. The spill will quickly be cleaned up and gone forever. These days, almost everyone has a cell phone with a camera. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.
- Get the name and phone number of any witnesses. Like the spill, they will quickly vanish and be gone forever. An independent eye witness is always valuable to your claim.
- Report the fall to the Manager and insist they make a written report. If there's no report, insurance companies may question if the fall really ever happened.
- Don't make any incriminating statements, like you were at fault or you weren't watching where you were going. These statements will be later used against you.
- Keep the shoes you were wearing for future inspection. Insurance companies like to claim the accident was your fault because of the shoes you were wearing. This especially applies to women.
- Save your receipt from the store/restaurant. This is additional proof that you were there when you fell, especially if no report is made.
- If you are injured, seek medical treatment as soon as possible. The longer you wait to get treatment, the harder it becomes to relate your injuries to the accident.
If you were injured in a slip and fall accident, call and talk to an experienced attorney. Slip and fall cases can be difficult to prove, and you need an attorney who has experience handling these cases.