Proving Negligence in a Slip and Fall Case

To successfully argue and win a slip and fall case, you have to be able to prove negligence.  This means the business or property owner where the fall happened was not acting responsibly to prevent injury.  When looking at slip and fall cases, they typically can be categorized in three ways:
  1. Foreign substance falls (slipping on snow, ice, spills).
  2. Stair falls
  3. Floor or threshold falls

To prove negligence in a slip and fall claim caused by foreign material,  you will need to provide your legal team with photos of the accident location.  This evidence will help establish the conditions that caused the fall.   The sooner you take these pictures after your accident, the better. In some cases, photos or videos taken just before your fall can work as well. Without proof of the conditions, whether via photograph or video, it can be challenging to argue, and therefore win, your case.

Because it is up to the plaintiff to prove the accident, the more information, you can gather about your slip and fall, the better. Without evidence, it will just be your word against the property owners. If you need to be transported to the hospital after your fall, having someone else on the scene to document the accident, can make a big difference for your case.  This is especially true when property owners rush to clean up the scene of the accident, making it impossible to document anything in the days to come.

Knowing how crucial photographic evidence is, take as many pictures from different angles and perspectives as possible.  Showing before and after photos and any other evidence that the property owner attempted to cover or hide their negligence, can make all the difference in winning your case.  Your lawyer will attempt to collect records of maintenance from the property owner, which will help argue your case.  The more evidence you can gather yourself as soon as the accident happens, the better.  Maintenance records can show negligence, but they don’t necessarily prove that it was the cause of your slip and fall.

In addition, your legal team will also look at building design, specifically if your fall happened on a staircase. If the building’s or property’s staircase has design problems, then arguing your case will be much easier. In general, the most significant staircase design issues include things like:

  • Missing or insufficient handrails
  • Improperly installed handrails
  • Staircase risers being too high, too low, or varying in height
  • Staircase steps insufficiently deep
  • Worn or damaged landings or stairs

In most cases, a construction expert will be hired by your legal team to examine the property and the site of your accident. This expert will inspect things like staircases and thresholds, documenting their findings so that they can be used in your case.

Whenever you are considering filing a personal injury lawsuit, it always pays to talk to an experienced attorney. Your case is much more likely to be successful if you work with an attorney you trust.

Call us today for a free, confidential consultation and case evaluation. Let our experience work for you. 603-647-2600.

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