What Should I Do after a Slip and Fall Accident?
One moment you’re walking along in a store or other establishment, minding your own business, and in the next you are on the ground, with your lower back seriously hurting. You have been the victim of a slip and fall accident. If you have been injured in a slip and fall or a trip and fall incident, it most often is due to the negligence of the store or establishment where you were injured. Florida law requires that the owner or operator of a business or other facility take reasonable care to ensure the safety of visitors to their premises. Florida law further requires property owners and operators to maintain their property free of any dangerous conditions or any other conditions that may cause someone injuries and to ensure it is safe for members of the public to visit. Unfortunately, these laws are not always followed. That is when serious injuries can occur. Taking the steps below as soon as possible after a slip and fall or trip and fall incident has occurred will help you recover full damages against the appropriate party in connection with your injuries suffered as a result of someone else’s negligence.
Steps to Help You Recover Maximum Compensation in Your Florida Slip and Fall Claim
- Take photographs of the scene using your mobile phone
Everyone’s smartphone has a camera and using it immediately after the incident to document the conditions that led to your injury is very important. The details of the incident will be the clearest at that point. Whatever evidence there was of the substance or other condition on the floor that led to your fall will be quickly cleaned up by the store or establishment at which you fell and were injured. This may be critical evidence later. Inevitably there’s very often a dispute over the exact conditions of the premises the day that you were injured when a lawsuit has been filed and the attorneys are involved. The defense attorneys will try to twist the facts to fit their theory of the case, which is likely to be that you were at fault in causing the incident in which you were injured. Any photos you or someone else takes at the time of the accident will have time stamps on them, so the defendant and their lawyer likely will be hard-pressed to dispute their accuracy. They also will help your attorneys build your own case. Even if you are not able to take such photographs yourself, then it is imperative you ask someone else to do so in order to help your own case.
- Get names and contact information for any witnesses to the incident
Any time something like a slip and fall accident occurs, particularly in a crowded place such as a store, there are bound to be eyewitnesses. If you are the unfortunate victim of someone else’s negligence in an incident like this, then you need to get the names, addresses, telephone numbers and other contact information for anyone who happened to witness the incident. Having this information will enable your attorneys to follow up later with anyone who has firsthand knowledge of the circumstances in which you were injured. It will also help your attorneys to obtain complete information regarding your incident in order to help you recover maximum damages for your injuries and other losses. Having their contact information will enable us to ensure that defense lawyers do not reach out to the witnesses to the incident and attempt to get them to change their testimony or “forget” certain important facts regarding what they saw. Having equal access to the eyewitnesses levels the playing field, which is one reason it is so important that either you or someone on your behalf obtain this vital information from anyone who may have been nearby if you have been injured in a Florida slip and fall incident.
- Don’t admit any fault in connection with the incident
There is a natural human tendency to take ownership or blame yourself (either in whole or in part) for something going wrong, but that is not the right way to handle things in a scenario like a slip and fall or trip and fall incident. Our experienced Florida personal injury attorneys also see this in motor vehicle accidents. Someone may believe they were either partially or completely at fault without knowing that the incident had nothing to do with their own actions. This is particularly a problem in instances like a slip and fall incident, where someone affiliated with the store or establishment in which you slipped and injured yourself is likely to try to convince you that the incident was somehow your fault in order to reduce the store’s liability for your damages. Even if you believe you bore some fault in connection with the slip and fall incident that led to your injuries, it is not your responsibility to point that out. Instead that is the responsibility of the defense counsel that was appointed to represent the owner or operator of the store or establishment at which you slipped or tripped and fell.
Contact the Experienced Florida Personal Injury Attorneys at Schwed, Adams & McGinley, P.A.
When you or a loved one suffers a serious injury due to someone else’s negligence in failing to properly maintain their premises, you need experienced Florida legal counsel you can trust. The skilled Florida personal injury lawyers at Schwed, Adams & McGinley, P.A. are experienced in representing clients in cases involving slip and fall accidents. We routinely help clients who have been injured in slip and fall injuries to recover maximum compensation for their injuries. Call us toll free at 877.694.6079 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your slip and fall accident case with an experienced personal injury lawyer today.