Jan 24, 2017
How a Slip and Fall Attorney in Miami Handles Falls on a Wet Surface
If you’ve fallen on a wet floor, it’s easy to assume someone else will be responsible for your injuries. After all, a store owner or others would be responsible for noticing that the floor is wet and also for cleaning up a wet floor. It isn’t always that simple for a slip and fall lawyer in Miami – Florida law changed a few years ago making it difficult to provide negligence for slip-and-falls. The first step is to determine who’s liable for your injuries. In a store, you could say the store owner/employee(s) would be the responsible party. What if you’re on a public sidewalk? Sometimes, it’s covered by nearby companies, but that is rarely the situation. A slip and fall lawyer would have to investigate to see what claims could be made.
The first thing you should do is call for medical attention as nothing is more important than your well being. If you have the time or a friend who can, always document the scene as closely as you can. It is true that pictures are worth a thousand words, but they can also be the difference in your case. Your doctors can document any related injuries and the medical care you received resulting from the fall. The longer you wait, the more likely it is any opposing side can poke holes in your story. Sometimes, conditions can only be documented for a short time before they are cleaned up.
When you come to a slip and fall attorney, you may not be sure of what to expect. We handle everything from wet floors in a retail store to pool decks. Also, you could have been injured by fallen merchandise or due to lack of security. Each case is unique and should be assessed as such on an individual basis. The negligence often seems obvious to the injured party, however, it does not always meet the burden of proof in court.
Establish Reasonable Expectations with a Slip and Fall Lawyer in Miami
One of the most challenging parts of a slip and fall case is to establish negligence – (i) duty of care; (ii) breach of duty; (iii) damages caused by the breach of duty. A wet floor could be primed and ready for an accident with no negligence involved. A slip and fall attorney in Miami can ask the big questions and think like the courts and opposing attorneys. The big question that comes up is “is it reasonable under the circumstances?” Was it an “open and obvious” condition? Did the property owner know, or should have known, about the dangerous liquid on the floor?
Is it reasonable to expect the hazard wouldn’t be there when you walked through? Some would automatically say yes. Timing is one of the most important parts of the process the way Florida law works nowadays, though. If the liquid was spilled shortly before you walked through, staff wouldn’t have a reasonable amount of time to notice the spill and clean it up before you walked through. Store owners and employees need a reasonable time to ensure safe conditions after it becomes hazardous and camera systems also play a large role, especially if they could have noticed the spill on the closed-circuit video system a lot of stores use regularly to prevent theft, etc.
Another factor is the environment. If you’re by a pool or in the pool bathroom, you should expect the floors will be wet. It would be up to you to practice the appropriate caution when walking through. Many pools also put up signs about not running. If a pool allowed algae to grow around their pools creating more hazardous conditions, that would be a different story. The same could be said if the floors of a bathroom were soapy and staff didn’t address the problem in a timely manner or didn’t have regularly scheduled inspection times to make sure the bathrooms are nice and neat.
These are just some of the ways that someone could be injured in a slip-and-fall. What happens once you establish negligence?
A Miami Slip and Fall Attorney Can Establish the Value of Your Case
Proving liability is the biggest hurdle many face going into a personal injury case. Once you establish liability by the store owner/employee(s), a slip and fall attorney in Miami can investigate the value of your case. Going to the doctor as soon as possible is the first step in the process. We need hard evidence to document your injuries. You should also keep any follow-up appointments as therapy goes a long way on your road to recovery. Doctors can estimate how much you could expect to spend on further medical care too.
When you come to Nunez Law to talk to a slip and fall lawyer, always be honest about any past injuries as we want to avoid any issues or accusation of exaggerating or leaving out important details. It may not seem applicable but past medical history is something that insurance companies love to use when arguing that you were not injured by this incident, and being honest and up-front about your past is the best way to combat their allegations. Any significant and documented injuries could play a role in your case. If we know about old injuries early on, we can determine their impact on your suffering now and they help your current doctor(s) with treatment plans. Then we can calculate how much was related to those injuries and how much is caused solely by your new injuries. This allows us to calculate how much you deserve for the negligence of others. If defendants bring it up only after negotiations start, it could have a stronger impact.
We look at factors including your medical bills, time you take off work, future earning capacity, and more. We use these to objectively measure your financial losses. At Nunez Law, we like to provide you with a complete and thorough analysis every time. For a free consultation with a slip and fall lawyer you can rely on, click here.