Building a Slip and Fall Claim? Avoid These Common Mistakes
Slip and falls are one of the most common causes of accidental injuries. It doesn’t take much to hurt more than your pride after slipping or tripping. If you happened to do so on someone else’s property, though, you may have grounds for a claim.
In filing a personal injury claim against the liable party, you can seek compensation for all the losses you wouldn’t have incurred had you not slipped. Since you’re not guaranteed a payout, however, it’s important to do everything in your power to give your claim the best chance of success.
This starts with avoiding critical mistakes from day one. Let’s take a look at some of the most common mistakes that slip and fall claimants tend to make:
1. Failing to Document the Scene of the Accident
Unless you need emergency medical attention, you should document the scene where you slipped and fell. Take photographs of the area, including the hazard that led to the accident, and write down the names and contact details of any eyewitnesses who saw what happened.
If there are any security cameras overlooking the scene, you’ll also want to request the footage they captured. If at all possible, do not leave until such footage is in your possession. Otherwise, it could be altered or overwritten before you get the chance to return and ask for it.
2. Failing to Get Prompt Medical Care
If you put off visiting a doctor, your injuries could worsen, resulting in additional complications. This, in turn, may open the door for the opposing party to put some blame onto you, thereby reducing their own liability and, subsequently, their financial obligation to you.
It could also lead the insurance adjuster to challenge your credibility in general. If you didn’t need immediate medical attention, after all, how bad could your injuries have really been?
3. Failing to Report the Accident to the Property Owner
While you may want to leave the establishment as quickly as possible after slipping and falling, it’s important to get the property owner to acknowledge what happened. If you were hurt at a place of business, the manager on duty should draft an incident report, and you should not leave the premises until they give you a copy.
4. Failing to Wait Until You’ve Reached Maximum Medical Improvement to Conclude the Negotiations
It will probably be tempting to accept the opposing party’s first offer, especially if the associated losses are adding up fast. There’s no way to be sure of the extent of the damages, however, until you’ve reached maximum medical improvement. If you accept a premature payment and then suffer additional complications, you’ll have no legal recourse for seeking more funds.
Speak with a West Palm Beach Slip and Fall Attorney
Was your life turned upside-down because a property owner failed to maintain their premises? To see if you might have grounds for a claim, turn to the compassionate team at Donaldson & Weston.
Each of our lawyers is paid through contingency fee contracts, which means you’ve got nothing to lose by enlisting our help. Call 561-299-3999 or submit our Contact Form to schedule a free initial consultation with a slip and fall lawyer in West Palm Beach.