Determining Liability and Negligence in Slip and Fall Cases
Nobody expects to suffer a life-changing injury, but every day, countless New Yorkers fall victim to the negligence of others. While the physical recovery may be a scary thought, many people face insurmountable debt due to medical bills and time away from work.
One of the more common types of personal injuries is a slip and fall. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, slip and falls can happen almost anywhere, and they are particularly dangerous for the elderly.
Most people are not prepared for the aftermath of an injury. After all, serious accidents are often unexpected. If you were the victim of a slip and fall, or if you want to be prepared for the worst, then you should understand the steps to take in order to protect your interests after an injury.
One of the most important elements in these cases is determining liability and proving negligence. Each case is unique, and the best way to learn if you have a valid claim is to contact an experienced personal-injury lawyer
Kent Hazzard, LLP is a White Plains personal-injury attorney with a track-record of successful case outcomes. Schedule a consultation today by calling 914-948-4700
In the meantime, read on to learn more about determining liability in slip and fall cases::
Who Is Liable?
When determining liability, it is important to ask whether the property owner or manager committed willful negligence. If he or she was aware – or should have been aware – of a potential hazard, and that hazard caused the injury, then the victim may be able to recover damages.
Victims in premises liability cases, which often stem from slip and falls, fall under one of three categories: an invitee, a licensee or a trespasser. Invitees typically refer to people who were invited to an owner’s property, meaning that they place their trust in the owner to maintain a safe area.
Licensees and trespassers differ in that they have their own motivations for being on a property. The difference between these two is that a licensee has permission to be on the property while a trespasser is allegedly violating private property laws.
In some cases, invitees have a better chance of recovering damages than licensees and trespassers. Licensees may be able to recover compensation, depending on their purpose for being on the property and what the expectations of the property were. It is difficult for trespassers to recover damages in a slip and fall case, largely because they were allegedly committing a crime with full awareness.
One of the most critical factors in any personal-injury case is establishing negligence on behalf of the defendant. Plaintiffs can prove negligence by demonstrating that a property owner had advanced knowledge of an issue that would be likely to cause serious injury, and elected to do nothing about it.
If you were injured on a commercial or residential property, then you may face steep medical bills and lost wages. Kent Hazzard, LLP is a White Plains injury lawyer who can evaluate your case to determine if you may have a valid claim for damages. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 914-948-4700.