If you have been in a slip and fall accident, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries. This is incredibly important since you have most likely been left with extensive medical bills and treatment costs.
If you want to file a slip-and-fall accident claim, there are certain steps you need to follow to set yourself up for success. At Henderson Taylor Law Firm, we have extensive experience in slip and fall cases, and we are dedicated to helping victims get the compensation they deserve. So, keep reading to find out how to get your slip and fall claim started.
Seek Medical Attention
If you have experienced a slip, trip, or fall accident, the first thing you need to do is seek medical attention. You should take this step even if you are not experiencing any severe symptoms immediately after the accident. Many injuries may not show symptoms until later on, and getting medical care is an important part of the documenting process.
The medical care team will document any injuries you have sustained, which can help prove why you need compensation later on.
Report the Incident
The next step you should take after a slip and fall accident is to notify the business or property owner about what happened. Reporting the accident notifies the at-fault party of the hazard and how it caused you to injure yourself.
Reporting the accident can be important later on, especially if the at-fault party fails to correct the problem.
Like any kind of accident, you need to make sure you document any evidence that can support your case. For slip, trip, and fall accidents, this often includes documenting your injuries and the place where the accident occurred. Important kinds of evidence include:
- Previous accidents
- Safety hazards
- Medical records
For a slip and fall claim, the majority of the evidence you need will be centered on your injuries. That is why it is crucial that you have your medical records and any medical bills concerning the accident.
Hire an Attorney
After a slip and fall accident, you need to hire a personal injury attorney who can represent your case. They can help you get access to evidence that is more difficult to find, such as previous accident reports about the at-fault party or surveillance video footage.
An attorney can also communicate with the other involved parties, taking the stress off you. This is especially important when it comes to communicating with insurance companies since you do not want to agree to anything or accept a low compensation offer.
The personal injury solicitor you choose should have previous experience with trip and fall cases and should be up-to-date with the most recent legal developments.
File the Claim
The last step of this process is to file your slip and fall claim to start the legal process. You should do this as soon as possible since there is a three-year limit in the state of Washington. If you are filing this claim on behalf of someone who died from a slip and fall accident, you must file this claim within three years of the victim’s death.
Your personal injury attorney can help you compile evidence to support your claim and file it correctly. They can also help you understand different legal developments that may impact how you should file your claim. For instance, there are some exceptions to the statute of limitations for slip and fall claims. This applies if you are in a coma as a result of the accident or if you were a minor at the time of the accident.
There is also an exception to the statute of limitations if you are in the military or you have to take steps to conceal your identity.
How Much Compensation Can You Get From a Slip and Fall Settlement?
How much you can receive for a slip and fall accident is completely dependent on the situation. Your settlement often depends on things like negligence, the extent of your injuries, liability, and the cost of your medical treatments. Extenuating factors may also apply to your settlement amount, such as lost wages, long-term disability, and reduced earning potential.
Washington also recognizes non-economic damages such as:
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of self-esteem
These damages are harder to prove but may still apply to your claim, depending on the situation and the evidence you have. Things like doctor notes, therapist notes, medical diagnoses, and personal journals can all help prove non-economic damages.
Common Causes of Slip, Falls, and Trip Accidents
Trip and fall accidents can happen in a variety of situations, whether you are simply visiting a place of business or working at your place of employment. A common example of slip and fall hazards is uneven floor surfaces or floor surfaces that are wet or slippery without any hazard signs.
Other factors, such as poor lighting, trailing cables, incorrect floor coverings, and clutter, can all contribute to slip, fall, and trip accidents. For outdoor spaces, things like uneven surfaces, ice, and rain can cause hazards as well.
The most common slip and fall injuries include soft tissue injuries, bone breaks and fractures, head and spinal injuries, dislocation, and sprains. The severity of these injuries depends on the nature of the accident, such as how you landed and how hard the surface was.
Hire an Experienced Slip and Fall Attorney Today
Navigating the process of filing a slip-and-fall claim can feel very overwhelming since there are so many steps. To ensure that you get the compensation you deserve, you need to make sure you have enough evidence in your favor and that you hire a personal injury attorney.
At Henderson Taylor Law Firm, we are dedicated to defending the downtrodden and ensuring that you get the compensation you need. We have handled thousands of slip and fall cases and provide empathetic and experienced guidance.
Contact us today at Henderson Taylor Law Firm by sending us a message online or by calling us at 360-737-1478.