Tampa Slip & Fall Lawyer
Although not as common as automobile accidents, millions of people are injured each year when they slip and fall on someone’s premises, most commonly a supermarket, restaurant or other retail establishment. Many people harbor the belief that the business owner is automatically responsible for falls occurring on their property. However, in the state of Florida, business owners are not liable just because someone falls and is injured on their premises. Property owners are only liable when they cause a hazardous or defective condition on their property or allow a condition to exist on the property when they know, or should have known, the hazard is present. Seek professional representation from a trusted Tampa slip & fall lawyer.
For example, a common occurrence is an injury sustained due to a slip and fall on liquid. As mentioned above, business owners are liable when they or their employees cause the hazard. Therefore, if it can be shown that the employees of the business spilled liquid on the floor while stocking the shelves and failed to clean it up, the business owners may be found liable. The business owners may also be liable when they did not directly create the dangerous condition if it can be shown that the hazard was there long enough for the business owner to reasonably know of the danger and yet they failed to clean it up.
It is also important to know that, like the property owner, the injured party also has a responsibility to be cautious. In nearly every slip and fall case, the defendant will focus on the injured party’s conduct and, in particular, why the injured party did not recognize the hazard and avoid it. If you are injured in a fall in a business establishment, seek help from an experienced Tampa slip and fall lawyer and take these steps at the scene to protect yourself:
1. REPORT THE FALL
Falling in public is an embarrassing event and your first inclination may be to get up and get out of the store as soon as possible. However, if you sustained injuries in the fall, it is important for you to document the incident immediately. Advise the store manager of your fall and insist that he or she complete an incident report. After the incident report is completed, ask for a copy of the report and also take down the name of the person you spoke to as well as the names of any store employees and customers present.
2. DETERMINE WHAT CAUSED YOU TO FALL
Take a close look at the area around you to determine exactly what made you fall whether it be a substance on the floor, water leaking from a cooler or produce display, or some other substance. You must be able to state precisely what caused you to fall. Look at it closely so that you can describe the size, shape and color of the substance. It is also important to look for evidence that the substance has been there for some time such as footprints or cart marts through the substance.
3. GET MEDICAL ATTENTION
Get Medical Attention: If your injuries are severe enough that you need immediate attention, have the store manager call an ambulance or have someone transport you to an emergency room or private physician. Be sure to provide your doctor with a complete history of how you fell.
4. GET LEGAL HELP
Retail businesses will often give you the run around following a slip and fall accident. They may initially agree to pay for your medical bills only to later change their mind if the medical bills are substantial.
Contact Our Experienced Tampa Slip & Fall Lawyers
In order to protect yourself at this critical stage of your case, contact your Tampa slip & fall accident lawyer at Barbas, Nunez, Sanders, Butler & Hovsepian. Our slip & fall accident lawyers have extensive experience in personal injury matters, including slip and fall accidents, and can help you receive fair compensation for your injuries.