Slip & Fall Accidents
INSPECT THE SCENE. Slip and fall accidents can be caused by many factors, such as objects left on the ground, substances (like a water spill, etc.) that made the area unsafe, the condition of the walking surface (broken tiles or pavement, loose carpeting, etc.), or the physical layout of the area. Inspect the accident scene to determine the specific cause of your fall.
TAKE PICTURES AND VIDEOS. Thanks to smartphones, most people have access to easy to use, high quality cameras to capture helpful information. It is critical to take pictures of an accident scene as soon as possible and of the participants involved if anyone may have been injured. Be sure to take clear pictures of whatever caused the fall and the surrounding area.
FILL OUT AN ACCIDENT REPORT FORM OR OTHER INCIDENT REPORT. Many private enterprises will have accident or incident report forms that can be filled out as part of their investigation. Be sure to fill out any such form to document your accident and any injuries you may have sustained.
GATHER AND RECORD INFORMATION. Write down everything that happened, including the date, time, and day of the week of the accident. Write down the address/location of the accident and what caused your slip and fall. Write down the name and contact information of anyone you speak with about the accident or at the scene. If there are any witnesses, be sure to get their names and phone numbers and addresses and write them down! It can be very difficult to locate witnesses after an accident if no one has gathered their information. Be as accurate as possible, and make sure that no speculation is included in your notes and records.
STAY ORGANIZED. Following an accident you should keep a file of all accident-related notes, documentation, records, pictures, and other information. Make sure to keep a record the contact information of everyone involved in the accident, your attorneys’ contact information, any insurance claim number you may have, the insurance adjuster assigned to your claim, and every doctor and medical provider you may have visited.
AVOID SPEAKING WITH INSURANCE ADJUSTERS. Remember that insurance companies are looking to protect themselves and are not your friend! Such companies often attempt to settle a claim below its fair value. Make sure to consult with your attorney before signing any papers provided by an insurance company.
KEEP COPIES OF ALL MEDICAL RECORDS. Insurance coverage is a complex and at time confusing world. When dealing with an accident that involves injuries, both car and health insurance considerations come into play. This can be very complex, and it’s important to keep an active log of each doctor seen and every medical record on file.
WATCH THE CLOCK. Depending on who owns the property, your slip and fall claim may need to be brought within either three years of the accident or 90 days of the accident. Claims brought against a municipality such as a town, city, school district, or public authority are required to be filed within 90 days of the event. Claims brought against private citizens may be done so within 3 years of the accident. Avoid the possibility of your claim being dismissed for untimeliness by selecting skilled legal representation.
CALL THE ZWEIG LAW FIRM. Even if you believe your injuries are minor, they may turn out to be more severe than you think. Many injuries develop and worsen over a period of time, and many injuries will feel very minor at first due to the body being in shock. Call The Zweig Law Firm for a free consultation – we can provide you with the proper steps and procedures for your unique situation.
Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.