Let’s face it, many, if not most of us have tripped and fallen at some point in our lives — whether it be from an escaped shoe lace, a step too short of a stair, or an unlikely object on the ground. When that happens, oftentimes we are able to walk away unharmed and either laugh at ourselves or awkwardly look around to see who witnessed our graceless fall.
There are, however, times when we might not be so lucky to go unscathed and the fall is not our fault.
If you have been hurt on someone else’s property due to their negligence and carelessness, it is important to know what your next steps are and to act promptly.
Apart from the obvious first step to GET HELP and seek medical treatment as needed, here is a list of the next steps that slip-and-fall victims should consider:
1) Identify The Cause of Your Fall – Look around to see what hazard on the property caused your fall. If it was a liquid, it is important to know what type of liquid it is – is it water? Beer? Milk? Or something else?
2) Collect Contact Information From Eyewitnesses – Check to see who is around you. It is extremely important to collect the names, addresses, phone numbers, and emails for all potential eyewitnesses. This can prove to be helpful if you decide you want to file a complaint, as these individuals can corroborate your statement.
3) Take Pictures – Taking photos of the exact location where you fell and what caused you to fall is also important to documenting the hazard. If you are still on the ground, have someone else take a picture of your position. If you are too injured to take pictures at the time, go back to the premises and take pictures of the area where your fall occurred. Also, be sure to document your injuries with photos.
4) Figure Out Who’s in Charge – Make sure you speak with the manager, owner, or landlord of the property or area where you had your accident. Ask him/her to write a report of the incident and request a copy of their writing. You may also try to talk to other workers on the property to find out what they knew about the hazard.
5) Look For Surveillance Cameras – Check to see if there were any security cameras in or near the vicinity where you fell. If you can take photographs of the cameras at the time of the incident or another time when you return to the scene, that is helpful as well. If you see cameras, you can try to request a copy of the video.
6) File a Police Report – No matter where the fall took place, be sure to file a report of the accident.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a slip-and-fall accident, having the right advocate on your side can make a significant difference. Schneider Law, P.C. specializes in premises liability cases like slip-and-falls and can provide you with experienced legal counsel and specific guidance for what to do next. Be sure to schedule a free consultation by calling Bethany Schneider at 404.800.3060.