Getting injured from a slip-and-fall accident rarely crosses our minds, but reports show that these types of accidents account for about 21% of Emergency Room visits in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), one in five falls leads to severe injuries.
Slip and fall accidents are often overlooked but are more common than most people think. Slipping on a wet floor at work or any other premises could result in a fall that severely harms you.
When you slip and fall, it is easy to blame it on your clumsiness, but in most cases, these accidents are a result of the negligent or reckless actions of the property owner. That’s why you should never ignore the cause and seek legal advice. Our Miami slip and fall lawyers have vast experience in this field and will be able to help you determine whether you have a case and the party that should be held liable.
In Miami, all landlords and property owners owe their visitors and tenants a duty to ensure safe conditions within their premises. Failure to ascertain this puts people’s lives in danger, so, they can be held liable for any resulting accidents, including slips and falls.
At Klotzman Law Firm, we have a team dedicated to protecting the rights of our clients. We will work to hold the parties at fault accountable and pursue the compensation you deserve. Call us today at 954-915-7405 to get started.
Common Causes of Slip & Fall Accidents
Most of the slip and fall accidents can be prevented, but all too often fall accidents happen because individuals and businesses do not take the right precautions to ensure their premises are safe for tenants, customers, employees, and visitors. A majority of these accidents are caused by:
Wet and Slippery Floors
Wet and slippery floors in Miami can result from a spill, leaky pipe, heavy rain, or even the high humidity common in the area. The surface may also be naturally slippery, with glass and polished stone floors being great examples.
Uneven or Unstable Surfaces
Buildings in Miami are expected to keep their walkways secure and safe for everyone, especially those that experience heavy traffic. Broken tiles, holes, and uneven concrete surfaces are examples of tripping hazards that can lead to falls and serious injuries.
Poorly Lit and Cluttered Walkways
Miami’s humid climate can lead to mold growth and clutter accumulation, creating hazards where a person can easily trip and fall due to poorly lit, cluttered, or disorderly walkways and hallways.
Dangerous Stairs and Ramps
Poorly maintained or structurally unfit ramps and staircases can create tripping and fall hazards in Miami.
Structural Defects and Poor Maintenance
Structural defects, like potholes in parking lots and torn carpeting, can result in slip/trip and fall accidents in Miami.
Failure to Implement Safety Measures
Failure to install gutters, storm drains, and anti-slip devices can contribute to slip-and-fall accidents.
Lack of Warning Signs
Failure to erect signs or limit access to places with any of the conditions mentioned above can also lead to accidents.
How a Miami Slip and Fall Attorney Can Help
After sustaining bodily harm from a slip and fall accident in Miami, you may want to claim your own, thinking it’s easy and you don’t have to pay legal fees. However, if you want the best chances of succeeding, that’s not the path you’ll want to take. Just like any other personal injury claim, you need to prove liability. This calls for concrete evidence showing that the property owner, business owner, or another party was negligent and didn’t implement safe conditions, which led to your slip-and-fall accident.
With the many nuances that come into play, proving liability is never a walk in the park. With a lawyer by your side in Miami, however, the process becomes more streamlined and improves the chances of a successful claim. Some of the areas where a Miami slip-and-fall accident lawyer comes in handy include:
Your lawyer will conduct a comprehensive investigation of your incident in Miami and gather all the necessary evidence. This involves gaining access to security camera footage to ascertain the premise’s unsafe condition and whether or not the other property owner knew or was aware. In addition, they will talk to any witnesses present at the scene and find out if there have been similar reports in the past. By doing this, they will ensure you have a solid claim against the building owner.
There are many recoverable damages in slip and fall claims in Miami, including medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, emotional distress, and pain. Some are easy to calculate while others are not due to their subjective nature. Your attorney will assess your claim in Miami and come up with a number that will handle most of your hurdles and recover compensation losses.
Dealing with Insurers
When it comes to personal injury claims in Miami, insurance providers are never your friend. They are in business and so, they will gravitate towards protecting their interests. This means employing strategies that nullify your claim or result in paying the least amount of compensation possible.
Acting as Your Advocate
A competent slip and fall attorney in Miami will ensure that all due procedures and deadlines are met. They will also act as your advocate throughout the whole claims process.
While most cases end during the negotiation stage, you may not reach a fair settlement agreement, meaning that you’ll have to go to court. Your slip-and-fall lawyer will be instrumental in preparing the claim for trial and representing you accordingly.
This adapted information provides relevant details regarding slip and fall injuries and accidents in Miami, their causes, the importance of legal representation, and how a Miami-based attorney can assist with such cases.
What to Do After a Slip & Fall Accident
Following a slip and fall accident on another party’s premises in Miami, you should be your best advocate and take the following steps:
Seek Immediate Medical Attention
If you get injured after a slip-and-fall accident in Miami, seek immediate medical attention. If it is an emergency, contact 911 for an ambulance dispatch. However, if it is a minor injury, you can visit your GP. Ensure you do it as soon as possible to increase your chances of recovery and also tip the odds in your favor if you decide to make a claim.
Document the Incident
If possible, record and take photos of your injuries and the accident scene in Miami. This is crucial as it will help prove that the building’s condition led to the slip and fall. After all, it can be hard to deny something that has been caught on camera.
Report the Accident
If you have slipped and fallen at work in Miami, report it to your supervisor or employer. If the accident happened in a business establishment, report it to the manager before leaving. The incident report not only creates a record of the incident but also puts the building owners on notice about any claim you may file.
Collect Witness Information
If any people saw the accident in Miami, ensure you collect their names and contact details. Witnesses often prove to be invaluable when it comes to proving liability. In addition, they help protect your rights by solidifying your version of the story.
Assess Immediate Remediation
To protect others from going down the same road as you in Miami, check to see whether the issues can be addressed immediately. However, only do this after taking photos and videos of the condition or scene.
Consult a Miami Slip & Fall Attorney
Slip and fall accidents can be challenging to prove and tend to be viewed skeptically. Given the slim chances of proving liability and getting compensated, it is in your best interest to hire a reputable slip-and-fall accident lawyer in Miami. They have the necessary skills and expertise to make a solid case on your behalf. They will also tell you whether you have a valid claim so that you do not waste your time and energy.
Proving Liability in a Slip & Fall Accident
Property owners in Miami, Florida, are obligated to keep their establishments on a reasonable safety level and fix any existing dangerous conditions in a timely fashion. Unfortunately, when an accident occurs, proving that the negligent property owner was liable can be tricky.
They usually defend themselves by claiming that the victim had a role to play in the accident. To prove negligence in a Miami slip and fall case, you are required to show:
Knowledge of Dangerous Conditions
The owner of the establishment in Miami knew about the dangerous condition or should have been aware of it.
Creation of Dangerous Condition
The owner of the establishment in Miami created a dangerous condition.
Failure to Remedy or Warn
The owner of the establishment in Miami was aware of the situation but did not take the necessary steps to remedy or warn people about it.
Lack of Awareness
You were not aware of the dangerous situation, meaning there were no warning signs, or could not see it in time.
Keep in mind that each slip and fall accident case varies in Miami, and different factors may affect the outcome of your claim. Your lawyer will look into the specifics and advise you on the best way forward.
Determining Liability in a Miami Slip & Fall Claim
It is important to note that you are not automatically entitled to compensation following a slip and fall injury at another party’s establishment in Miami. To be eligible for compensation, you need to show that one or more parties were directly responsible for the accident and the resulting injuries.
Determining liability can be complex in Miami and involves proving various elements of negligence. That’s why you need top-tier legal representation. The most important aspects of negligence include:
Duty of Care
Property managers, owners, and occupiers owe their visitors, guests, and employees a duty of care while in their establishments in Miami. Fulfilling this duty of care entails keeping the premises free of dangers or conditions that may lead to serious injury. Business owners, for example, have a duty to keep their floors clean and well-maintained to keep their customers reasonably safe from slip-and-fall accidents.
Breach of Duty
The next element of proving negligence in Miami involves showing that the defendant indeed failed to fulfill their duty of care. An example is a grocery store owner failing to put up a sign indicating the floor is wet or slippery. If a customer comes in, falls, and sustains a severe injury, then they would have the legal grounds to file a personal injury claim.
Next, you need to prove that the defendant’s actions or lack thereof were the direct cause of the accident. Proving liability in a slip and fall accident in Miami involves presenting evidence that shows the party at fault for negligent acts is solely the responsible party for your injuries and losses.
Lastly, you need to show that you suffered harm in Miami. Even if the owner, occupier, or manager failed to fulfill their duty of care, filing a lawsuit against them will be fruitless if you did not experience physical, emotional, or financial harm from the accident. Your lawyer should be able to determine all the damages incurred to ensure you have a valid case.
Duty of Care in Slip & Fall Accident Claims
Slip and fall cases fall under the “premises liability” umbrella. These cases focus on whether the person in charge of the establishment breached their duty. The duty of a property owner, manager, or occupier is to protect against, repair, or warn about any known or reasonably foreseeable dangers.
Understanding the Duty of Care
As you file a slip and fall accident case in Miami, it’s essential to understand the duty of care that property owners, managers, or occupiers owe to visitors, customers, or employees. The duty involves protecting against, repairing, or warning about any known or reasonably foreseeable dangers.
Challenging Questions in Slip & Fall Claims
The legal team or insurance company representing the property owner, manager, or occupier may pose some questions in an attempt to absolve their client of the legal duty to ensure the safety of visitors, customers, or employees. Some of the questions include:
Valid Reason for Being on the Property
Did you have a valid reason to be on the property during the time of the slip and fall accident?
Cautious Person’s Perspective
Would a reasonably cautious person (not distracted by anything), who found themselves in the same situation have seen and avoided the dangerous condition?
Were you doing anything that may have contributed to the accident and the injuries as well?
Warning Regarding Conditions
Did the property occupier, manager, or owner provide a warning regarding the condition that resulted in the slip and fall accident?
Evaluating Your Slip & Fall Accident Claim
When it comes to claiming Miami, it is crucial to determine the value of your slip and fall accident claim. However, this process is not always straightforward, as it depends on various factors unique to each accident report.
Consult an Experienced Miami Slip & Fall Lawyer
Seeking a rough estimate of the claim’s worth in Miami is advisable to determine whether it is worth pursuing. An experienced personal injury lawyer in Miami becomes invaluable for this task. They consider factors such as medical bills, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, property damage, and out-of-pocket expenses resulting from the accident. Non-monetary losses like emotional trauma, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment in life, etc., are also taken into account. This helps them come up with a figure that should not be too far from what they deserve.
Statute of Limits for Slip & Fall Claims
In the state of Florida, there is a time limit for filing a slip and fall claim. You have four years from the date of the accident to initiate a claim. Similar to other personal injury cases, going past this deadline forfeits your right to make a legal claim.
Importance of Timely Action in Slip & Fall Claims
While four years may seem like ample time, it’s crucial not to wait in Miami. Delaying can cause evidence to fade, witnesses to forget specific details, and parties responsible for employing tricky tactics to avoid fair compensation. To preserve evidence and protect your rights, involve your attorney as soon as possible. This allows you to build a strong case from the outset and recover from your injuries with confidence.
Hire a Professional Miami Slip & Fall Accident Attorney
Slip and fall accidents are responsible for a significant percentage of ER visits across the United States. An unexpected fall can lead to all kinds of injuries, some of which can affect your life permanently. If the accident was due to the negligent actions of another party in Miami, do not allow yourself to suffer.
Seeking Justice with Klotzman Law Firm
Klotzman Law Firm has been helping slip-and-fall accident victims across Miami seek justice and pursue the compensation they deserve. Our team is adequately prepared to assist you throughout the entire claims process. We employ a tough and resilient approach in each case, regardless of the party we are against. Our results have earned us a reputation as one of the most reliable firms in Florida.
We operate on a contingency basis, meaning you do not have to worry about legal fees. Call us today at 954-915-7405 to begin the journey toward justice.