Do I Need A Lawyer For A Slip And Fall?
In a perfect world, none of us would ever suffer an injury in a slip and fall accident. We wouldn’t lose our footing in a slippery, icy parking lot,
or trip over a cracked or uneven sidewalk, or crash to the ground after unknowingly stepping into a spill on Aisle 5 at the grocery store.
But it isn’t a perfect world.
Every day, people fall down after tripping or slipping on an unforgiving or unsafe surface. Some of these folks suffer little more than momentary embarrassment and a couple of scrapes. But tens of thousands of slips and falls cause severe, life-changing injuries and even death every year.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
- One out of five falls causes a serious injury such as broken bones or a head injury,
- Each year, 3 million older people are treated in emergency departments for fall injuries.
- Over 800,000 patients a year are hospitalized because of a fall injury, most often because of a head injury or hip fracture.
- Falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries (TBI).
After a slip and fall accident, victims may not know what to do next or who they can turn to for help. All they know is that they are in pain and that their injuries have kept them off the job and out of a paycheck. They see the medical bills and other expenses piling up and feel the stress and anxiety that only adds to their predicament. And they may believe that none of this is their fault or wonder how they can hold accountable the party who put all of these burdens on their shoulders.
Meeting With A Slip and Fall Attorney Is The Best Way To Know Whether You Should Get A Slip and Fall Attorney
If you suffered injuries in a slip and fall accident, you likely know some or all of these feelings. But how do you know whether you should get a lawyer for your slip and fall accident? How can you find out whether you have a claim for compensation that is worth pursuing?
While it may sound circular and even self-serving, meeting with an experienced Lake County slip and fall attorney is the best way to determine whether you should hire a slip and fall lawyer. They know the law, worked on similar cases can analyze the unique facts and circumstances of your accidents and injuries, and understand how your insurance company, judges, and juries approach slip and fall claims.
If you don’t have a claim from an insurance company, a good lawyer will tell you so. They don’t want to spend their time and money pursuing a case that has little chance of success. Conversely, if someone’s negligence caused your injuries and losses and the facts and law support your claim, your lawyer will fight tirelessly to get you the compensation you deserve.
Either way, your initial consultation with a slip and fall lawyer will likely cost you nothing, so there is no reason not to make a call.
That said, here are a couple of things to recognize when considering whether to get an expert lawyer for slip and fall accidents to look at your case.
Are You A Victim Who Suffered Injuries and Losses?
As noted, not all slips and falls result in injuries beyond a bruised ego or some scrapes. Personal injury law follows the basic principle of “no harm, no foul.” Put another way, a plaintiff must prove that they incurred damages or losses because of the defendant’s negligence in order to obtain compensation in a slip and fall lawsuit. A defendant could have knowingly left their property in such dangerous shape that a fall was almost inevitable, but if that fall doesn’t hurt you, it doesn’t matter.
If you suffered any kind of injury or know of someone who endured slip and fall accidents, you should speak with an attorney to discuss your situation. Some injuries may seem like no big deal at first, but get worse over time. If that happens, you want to make sure that you have preserved your right to seek compensation.
Premises Liability Claim: Holding Property Owners Accountable
“Premises liability” is the legal principle behind holding property owners at fault for injuries that happen because they failed to maintain their property in a reasonably safe manner. To prove that an owner was “negligent” and, therefore, at fault for the injury or death, the person who fell must show that the property owner owed the person a duty of care and did not live up to this duty by failing to maintain their property as a reasonable person would under the same circumstances. The injured person must also prove that he or she indeed suffered injuries and that the breach of duty from property owners caused those injuries and damages.
Your Lake County premises liability lawyer will consider where and how your accident occurred, the property’s condition, who was at fault, and the owner’s knowledge of and actions related to the property defect that caused your accident. All of these will play a significant role in the outcome of your case.
Time Is Running Out To File a Slip and Fall Lawsuit
A statute of limitations is a law that sets forth the period within which you must file a lawsuit for a particular claim. If you file a lawsuit after the applicable statute of limitations has passed, a judge will promptly dismiss it. You will not be able to obtain any compensation for your losses. That is one of the biggest reasons to meet with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after your slip and fall cases.
In Illinois, the statute of limitations for most slip and fall lawsuits is two years from the date of the accident. This deadline can come up fast. This could be because the individual waited a long time before speaking with a lawyer. Often, a plaintiff’s lawyer may still be negotiating with the other party’s insurance company as the cutoff date draws near.
In such cases, filing a slip and fall injury lawsuit is necessary to preserve a victim’s rights while further investigation or negotiations continue in your case.
Need An Expert Slip-and-Fall Lawyer?
Libertyville personal injury attorney Kirk Moyer can help with your case. Call our law firm today for your free consultation. If you have been injured or lost a loved one in a trip and fall or slip and fall case, please give Lake County slip and fall lawyer, Kirk Moyer, a call at (847) 244-3444 to arrange for your FREE initial consultation. Self-representation may not always help in your case. So call our attorneys today.