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Slip and fall accidents may appear minor, but they can have serious consequences. Victims may suffer fractures to the hands and legs, concussion, soft tissue injuries, spine injury or even traumatic brain injuries. In any circumstance when you suffered such an accident, you should seek medical assistance. However, once you are finally at home recovering, you will have expensive hospital bills to pay or even lose the ability to work and earn an income. If the accident happened at a place controlled by a manager or property owner, you should contact an Orlando Slip and Fall Lawyer at VG Law.

In Florida, trips and falls are the number one reason for hospitalization and the main cause for death for elderly persons. Various factors, including age, physical fitness and pre-existing conditions make the difference between a common injury and a tragic outcome. In all instances, your next priority after calling 9-1-1 should be to ask your family to contact an personal injury attorney on your behalf.

Examples of Places Where Premises Liability Law Is Applicable

Of course, not all slip and falls incidents are eligible for settlement negotiations with the other party's insurer or trial. It has to have taken place on a private or public property, where a business owner, commercial property manager o homeowner is liable to maintain it safe for invitees and licensees (more information on this aspect later).

Thus, you are eligible to sue such an owner according to personal injury law in Florida if your accident occurred in:

  • private homes or other types of private properties
  • stores or other types of businesses
  • restaurant, drive-in dinner
  • community areas or public parks.

Common Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents

In our experience as Orlando personal injury lawyers, the most common slip and fall accidents leading to bodily injury are caused by:

  • recently mopped floors or spilled liquid on an indoor or outdoor surface
  • water or oil spills on the ground or in parking areas
  • uneven or cracked driveway or walkway
  • poor lighting
  • broken or missing handrails on stairs or steps
  • broken tiles or torn carpet
  • uneven transitions from one floor to the other.

When filing personal injury lawsuits, it is the victim's burden to prove that any of these conditions were known or should have been known by the owner and they failed their duty of care responsibilities in removing those dangerous conditions or properly signaling them (for instance, placing a "Wet Floor" sign next to a puddle of water).

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Understanding the Property Owner's Liability

Injury law firms will start their initial consultation by asking whether you were an invitee or a licensee to the property when the accident occurred. An invitee is someone present at the premises at the owner's invitation, for example a client in a store or hotel guests. A licensee is a visitor,  present at the property for their own purposes, for instance a contractor or a lessee.

If the accident victim is present at the location without the owner's permission and in breach of the law, they are trespassing. According to premises liability law, property managers and owners only have the duty to refrain from actively causing injuries to trespassers. However, there is one exception to this principle, the so-called "attractive nuisance doctrine".

According to this principle, property owners are liable for damages and physical injuries caused to children, even if they are trespassing on the public or private property. In order to seek financial compensation in this case, the plaintiff must prove that:

  • the owners of the property have or should have the knowledge that children are likely to be present near the property
  • they knew that the property has a feature or condition that would cause harm to children (an uncovered pool, for example)
  • the effort or financial burden to correct this condition is very small compared to the potential harm
  • the owners or occupiers of the property fails to take this corrective measure and as a result a child suffers injuries.

An experienced accident attorney at VG Law will offer you the best explanation for your particular case, and present you all the options you have to obtain optimal compensation for your expenses, losses, pain and suffering.

The Challenges You Face in Proving Your Case

Filing and winning a slip and fall lawsuit is not simple at all. There are two key challenges you face. One is to prove that the owner of the private or business establishment breached their duty of care towards you, that is, failed to maintain a safe condition for you to use the premises.

This means that the injured person has the burden to demonstrate the property owner negligence, according to Florida Statutes Title XLV Chapter 768.Moreover, the Statutes stipulate that:

  • the condition must have existed for a sufficient period of time that the property owner or manager should have become aware of it, or
  • the dangerous circumstance occurs frequently and, thus, it is foreseeable.

At the same time, premises liability accidents are judged in light of the "comparative fault" principle, enshrined in Florida Statutes Title XLV 768.81. According to this principle, you are still eligible to recover damages for this type of accident even if you are partly at fault. However, the maximum compensation you are entitled to is proportionally reduced by your percentage of fault for the accident.

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Types of Damages You May Recover after a Successful Slip and Fall Lawsuit

The results of a dangerous slip and fall accident range from minor injuries to very serious injuries. Victims may suffer from:

  • internal injuries
  • spinal cord injury
  • traumatic brain injuries.

Depending on the severity of the bodily injuries, you may have to spend weeks or months in hospital. During this time, you will not be able to work and earn your regular income, and may even lose your capacity to perform your job. A jury will usually include in their award compensations for:

  • medical bills
  • lost wages and loss of earning capacity
  • future medical care costs if you are left with impairment or disability
  • rehabilitation costs, including professional reconversion, physical therapy and assistive devices (walker, wheelchair)
  • pain and suffering.

Why You Should Consider Hiring An Experienced Orlando Slip and Fall Lawyer

As you have understood so far, the burden of proving that the property owner did not demonstrate reasonable care is on your shoulders. On your own, you will receive little to no assistance from the property owner to demonstrate poor maintenance or the unsafe condition that led to your accident. At the same time, you will be embroiled in insurance disputes that may take so much time that, when you decide to take legal action, you may find out that the statute of limitations ( the term is 4 years in Florida) has expired.

A skilled civil trial lawyer is able to:

  • access resources unavailable to you and collect evidence to reconstruct the circumstances of your accident
  • prove the property owner's negligence
  • document the extent of your injuries
  • make a fair assessment of the amount of money you should receive.

To assist personal injury clients, the Orlando slip & fall law firm will reach out to all the relevant parties, including the employees or tenants of the location where the hazardous conditions caused your accident, witnesses and technologies. Trial attorneys will prepare your case with every piece of relevant evidence, including:

  • CCTV footage
  • photos and videos taken by witnesses
  • reports prepared by first responders (EMT and police)
  • property maintenance records
  • your medical evaluation, including surgery, scans, and recovery prognosis.

VG Law - Using Our Extensive Experience to Help Injury Victims!

At VG Law, you will find a team of Orlando personal injury attorneys who will support your claim for compensation with strong arguments based on facts and on extensive knowledge of the law. We know when to ask the right questions to receive answers that make light in personal injury accidents.

Our civil trial experience allows us to win the maximum amount of dollars for injury, pain and loss you suffered due to commercial business owners' fault. So far we have assisted thousands of people file successful personal injury claims. We are not intimidated by the tactics an insurance company will use against you in order to make you drop your claim.

An experienced attorney at VG Law will answer to your online form or phone call: 833-HELP-365!

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