There is an unfortunate misperception that when it comes to slip and fall accidents, the most serious injury anyone could ever really suffer is a bruised ego. This couldn't be any further from the truth, however, as those involved in slip and fall accidents frequently suffer everything from severe muscle sprains and broken bones to debilitating knee injuries and slipped discs.
In an attempt to help dispel this and other longstanding myths concerning slip and fall accidents, today's post, the first in a series, will start providing more background information about how exactly they are viewed in the eyes of the law.
Slip and fall accident cases fall under the category of what are known as premises liability claims, meaning those legal actions involving personal injuries sustained while on property owned or otherwise maintained by a third party.
In general, a person who is injured in a slip and fall accident must be able to prove at least two elements in order to prevail in court: They must be able to demonstrate that their injuries were caused by a "dangerous condition" and that the property owner knew about this dangerous condition.
What exactly constitutes a "dangerous condition?"
Typically, a dangerous condition is one that 1) creates an unreasonable risk of bodily harm to persons situated on the property and 2) could not be anticipated under the circumstances (i.e., the danger in question was not otherwise obvious).
Some examples of dangerous conditions that could fit these criteria include imperceptible shifts in flooring, frayed or worn carpeting, inadequate lighting, narrow stairwells and, of course, wet floors.
We will continue this discussion in future posts, examining when exactly property owners can be considered to have known about the existence of a dangerous condition.
If you been seriously injured in a slip and fall accident, or as a result of what you believe was negligence on the part of a property owner, please consider speaking with a proven legal professional to learn more about your options for justice.