The Ins and Outs of a Slip and fall accident in Florida
You may have heard the term slip and fall but never understood exactly what it was referring to. A slip and fall incident is one in which someone loses his or her footing, falls and is injured on premises or property that is owned or operated by a third party. Slip and fall incidents can take a variety of forms, but the damages recoverable in a slip and fall incident are the same regardless of the circumstances under which the slip and fall incident took place. There are a number of damages recoverable in a slip and fall lawsuit, but there are strict time limits within which slip and fall lawsuits must be filed. Therefore, if you have been injured in a slip and fall incident in Florida, you should contact an experienced Florida slip and fall attorney right away.
Necessary Elements Needed to Prove a Slip and Fall Claim
As a general matter, under Florida law, property owners are required to keep their property in reasonably safe condition for guests or visitors and to take steps to remedy any dangerous conditions. In order to successfully prove a slip and fall case in Florida, Florida law requires that a victim prove three separate things. First, the injured person must prove that the owner of the property on which the victim fell owed what the law calls a “duty of care” to the victim. In the case of a slip and fall incident in a business establishment, the business is deemed to owe a duty of care, or a responsibility, to any member of the public who enters the business establishment to maintain the establishment in reasonably safe condition. Whether or not the business owner maintained the business premises in a reasonably safe condition if you slipped and fell inside a business is a question of fact that differs in every case and that is determined by the judge or jury at trial based on the evidence each side offers. Finally, the victim must demonstrate that he or she was injured because the business or property owner did not utilize reasonable care.
Time Limits Applicable to Slip and Fall Claims
Under Florida law, a lawsuit related to a slip and fall incident must be filed within four years of the incident. Therefore, it is imperative that you contact an experienced Florida slip and fall attorney as soon as possible after you are injured in a slip and fall incident.
Damages Available in a Slip and Fall Lawsuit
A slip and fall lawsuit is considered a personal injury lawsuit in Florida, so the damages available are those available in a typical personal injury lawsuit. These include pain and suffering, bills for any past or future medical treatment the victim may have needed to seek, has sought or is currently seeking as a result of his or her injuries suffered in the incident, any past and future lost wages you have suffered or will suffer as a result of the slip and fall incident, and other damages you may suffer as a result of your injuries. In addition, your spouse can also recover damages for any lost support or services they have suffered as a result of your injuries suffered in the incident.
Special Rules Regarding Slip and Fall Incidents in Florida Involving Transitory Foreign Substances in Businesses
Under Florida law, if someone slips and falls on a transitory foreign substance, such as a puddle of water, in a business, the victim must prove that the business or its owner had knowledge of the foreign substance and failed to act to clean up the substance in order to succeed on his or her Florida slip and fall lawsuit. However, recognizing that it is difficult for a slip and fall victim to prove that a business owner may have had knowledge of a transitory foreign substance, Florida law permits a victim to introduce evidence that the business owner had actual or constructive knowledge of a foreign transitory substance like a puddle of water on the business owner’s premises. A slip and fall victim can prove this by establishing either that the dangerous condition existed for such a length of time that, in the exercise of ordinary care, the business establishment should have known of it or else that the condition occurred with regularity and was therefore foreseeable.
If You Have Been Injured in a Slip and Fall Incident in Florida, Contact Us
Slip and fall incidents occur frequently and can result in very serious injuries to those who may be the victim of someone else’s failure to maintain their property in a safe condition or remedy an unsafe condition on their property, such as a puddle of water. We are experienced attorneys who have successfully handled hundreds of slip and fall incidents for our clients. If you have been injured in a slip and fall incident in Florida, please contact us today for a free consultation regarding your case.
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