Slip, trip and fall accidents are often caused by dangerous property conditions that create a trap for unsuspecting persons. Many times, these conditions can lead to serious and debilitating injuries, especially when the elderly are involved. ROSSETTI, DEVOTO, MEDORI & BAXTER, P.C. has handled many fall cases involving business and restaurant owners, residential and commercial property owners, retail store owners, apartment complex owners, and landlords.
These accidents can occur in many ways but the typical incidences usually happen from objects left carelessly lying in the walkway of the injured person; failure to remove snow and ice, construction defects in stairs, floors and ramps or when an unexpected hole develops on the walking surface. Our firm will promptly and thoroughly investigate these cases, while preserving the key evidence before it disappears. Often times, a security camera will have captured your fall, and we can file a motion with a judge to force defendants to save and preserve this key evidence before it disappears. Additionally, an engineering expert will often be utilized to show the defect in the property and to prove that the condition was unsafe. Quick and decisive action is the key to proving and winning these cases.
Injuries Caused by Slip and Fall Accidents
There are many types of injuries caused by slip and fall accidents and an accident lawyer will be able to evaluate your case to determine the amount of compensation you deserve. The most common slip and fall accident injuries include the following:
- Ligament and tendon tears
- Dislocated shoulders
- Broken bones
- Head injuries and concussions
- Displaced wrist and ankle fractures
- Nerve and spinal damage
- Knee damage
- Brain Bleed
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
Whether you believe you suffered an injury or not, it is always important to seek medical attention following a slip and fall accident. Being able to show a jury or the defendant’s attorney medical records stemming from the accident will make it easier to prove your case. Aside from helping your accident lawyer build a strong case, your doctor will be able to provide you with the best treatment plan possible for your injuries.
Steps to Take in a Slip and Fall Accident
The actions you take in the moments after suffering an injury in a slip and fall accident can either help or hurt your personal injury claim.
Here are a few things you can do immediately:
- Fill out an incident report at the location where you fell.
- Take pictures of the area where you fell as soon as possible.
- Document by name, address and phone number any witnesses to your fall.
- Find out if the place where you fell had a video camera/security camera operating.
- Save your clothing and shoes.
Who Can Be Held Liable for My Injuries?
An accident lawyer from ROSSETTI, DEVOTO, MEDORI & BAXTER, P.C. will be able to evaluate the situation that left you injured and determine who can be held liable for your injuries. It very well could take some investigative work, especially if multiple entities could be held responsible and therefore have to compensate you for lost wages, pain and suffering, and medical expenses.
A slip and fall accident can involve multiple defendants. For example, if you slip and fall on a patch of ice in a shopping center’s parking lot, the property owner, landlord, and maintenance company might all be responsible for your injuries. It all depends on who was responsible for contacting the maintenance crew to salt the parking lot and if the crew blatantly ignored orders.
What Damages Can I Recover?
The damages you can recover in a slip and fall accident include medical expenses, current and future lost wages, pain and suffering, and funeral expenses if your loved one died because of their injuries. An accident lawyer from ROSSETTI, DEVOTO, MEDORI & BAXTER, P.C. will be able to provide you with an estimate as to how much you can recover from a slip and fall accident based on various factors. The factors taken into account include the following:
- How much you earn
- How long you have been out of work to date
- The cost of medical transport and care since the accident
- Level of pain and suffering you’ve endured
- Any other expenses stemming from the accident (home renovations for wheelchair accessibility or a live-in nurse)
Every slip and fall case is different, which is why it is in your best interest to speak to an experienced accident attorney about your case. It will be difficult to determine on your own how much your case is worth.
Keep an Injury Journal
It might be in your best interest to keep an injury journal after being involved in a slip and fall accident. This journal can be an effective piece of evidence used by your accident lawyer if your case reaches trial. It might even be used during negotiations with the lawyer for the defendant in the case.
An injury journal should include entries that are honest and descriptive. For example, keep track of how your injuries have affected your daily life, including your ability to do the most mundane activities.
Be as descriptive as possible with your journal entries. Describe how the pain has taken over your life and prevented you from cleaning your house, driving, standing for long periods, going for walks with your dog and anything else it has changed in your life.
Aside from keeping an injury journal, you must attend all scheduled doctor appointments, follow their treatment plan, and take the medicine that has been prescribed for pain management. If you deviate from any of the above it could seriously hurt your personal injury case and prevent you from obtaining compensation for your injuries.
Contact an Accident Lawyer Immediately
The first thing you should do in a slip and fall accident is call 911 so you can be transported to the hospital for medical treatment. The very next thing you should do is contact an accident lawyer from ROSSETTI, DEVOTO, MEDORI & BAXTER, P.C. Do not speak to the insurance company for the property owner, the landlord or anyone else who might wind up being named as a defendant in a lawsuit. Never accept a settlement offer from an insurance adjuster, as it will likely be lower than what a lawyer might be able to acquire for you.
RECENT SETTLEMENTS AND VERDICTS IN CASES INVOLVING UNSAFE AND DANGEROUS PREMISES
Results may vary depending on your particular facts and legal circumstances
$900,000 settlement for the wrongful death of 75 year old woman who was injured and died of a head injury after she tripped over negligently located parking bumpers in a South Jersey shopping center. Lou DeVoto handled the case.
$625,000 settlement for 65 year old woman who fractured her hip in a fall on defective steps in her new home. Lou DeVoto handled the case.
$525,000 Jury Verdict against LA Fitness for failing to properly train a member who paid for separate fitness training services. The member sustained a torn labrum in her shoulder and required surgery to correct the condition after her fitness trainer gave her an inappropriate exercise that caused injury to the shoulder. Lou DeVoto represented RD’s client.
$350,000 for a doctor who fell on ice and snow outside a condominium complex. Andy Rossetti represented the doctor.
$305,000 for fractured Talus after client tripped on improperly placed landscape netting. Lou DeVoto represented RD’s client.
$150,000 for RD’s client who fell on untreated ice on sidewalk of apartment complex in Camden County. Injury required surgery to correct dislocated knee cap.
$150,000 for torn rotator cuff and tendon rupture by a private contractor unloading mail at the US Postal Service after delivery cart failed due to overloading by the Postal Service.
$150,000 for slip and fall outside an Ocean City pharmacy.
$150,000 for woman’s fall at PATCO train station for failure to remove ice and snow resulting in a fractured ankle with surgery.