Consult With a Dedicated Long Island Slip and Fall Lawyer
Long Island slip and fall accidents happen every day. Whether a person falls on a wet floor in a grocery or department store, slips on an icy entryway at an apartment complex, or trips over an object in another person’s home, the resulting injuries can be equally debilitating. While many slip and fall accidents on Long Island do not result in serious injuries, some slip and fall accidents lead to catastrophic and fatal injuries.
Most people have slipped and fallen before and have been able to stand up and walk away with minor bruises, scrapes or cuts. Additionally, many slip and falls happen because of clumsiness. However, when a preventable slip and fall accidents happen that are the fault of another person or party, the injured person has the right to hold that person or party responsible.
The Long Island Slip and Fall Accident Attorneys of Parker Waichman LLP handle multiple slip and fall cases on a regular basis and have extensive experience helping clients receive compensation for their physical pain and mental anguish as well as compensation for lost income and medical expenses. Because slip and fall accidents have the potential to result in serious and often life-changing injuries, speaking with one of our attorneys is a good start to finding out if someone else should be held responsible for causing preventable injuries.
Understanding Long Island Slip and Fall Liability
A slip and fall accident is evaluated under the category of premises liability. When slip and fall accidents happen on another person’s property, that property owner may be held liable for injuries that result. For a property owner to be found liable for another person’s injuries under New York law, the injured party is required to establish that the property owner knew or should have known about an unsafe or dangerous condition on the property and did not take steps to eliminate the hazard. Dangerous and unsafe conditions on the premises can include:
- Uneven floor or sidewalk
- Wet or slippery floor
- Unmarked object
- Icy sidewalk
- Dangerous or defective stairs
If a property owner does not remove the danger or hazard, they may be held liable if a person suffers injuries. However, there are situations where a property owner may only be held partially at fault. For instance, if a customer is running through a store and falls on the floor, suffering injuries, the customer may share some of the blame. With the advice of slip and fall attorneys, Long Island residents can decide who is liable for their injuries and how to proceed.
Long Island Slip and Fall Lawsuits and Settlements
To establish that a property owner is liable for a person’s Long Island slip and fall injuries, the injured individual must prove that a property owner was negligent. Premises liability cases are governed by the general rules of negligence under New York law, so a person injured in a slip and fall accident must prove four things:
- The property owner owed a duty of care to the injured individual.
- The property owner breached their duty of care to the injured individual.
- The property owner’s breach of duty caused the individual to trip and fall.
- The trip and fall accident resulted in injuries and other damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages.
Long Island Slip and Fall Accidents in the Workplace
To establish that a property owner is liable for a person’s Long Island slip and fall injuries, the injured individual must prove that a property owner was negligent. The failure to identify and remove a hazard that a property owner knew or should have known about is one form of negligence that an injured person may be able to prove. Premises liability cases are governed by the general rules of negligence under New York law, and a person injured in a slip and fall accident must satisfy the following elements:
- The property owner owed a duty of care to the injured individual;
- The property owner has breached their duty of care to the injured individual;
- The property owner’s breach of duty caused the individual to trip and fall; and
- The trip and fall accident resulted in injuries and other damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages.
By owning property and allowing individuals to come to that property, whether the property is a business, an apartment complex, or a home, among other properties, the owner takes on a duty to ensure the premises are reasonably safe. A property owner’s failure to identify a wet floor, an uneven surface or sidewalk, dangerous stairs, icy sidewalks, or a hazardous object left on the floor are all ways in which a property owner can breach its duty of care to individuals on the property.
Long Island Slip and Fall Accidents that Happen in the Workplace
When slip and fall accidents happen in the workplace, the injured worker may have the option of filing a workers’ compensation claim to receive time off from work to recover from their injuries along with lost present and future wages in accordance with New York workers’ compensation laws. If an injured worker is eligible for workers’ compensation benefits (most employers in New York are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance coverage), the injured worker must notify their employer no later than 30 days following the accident. After notifying the employer, the next step is filing a workers’ compensation claim, which must be filed within two years of the accident in most cases. A Long Island slip and fall lawyer can help you navigate the sometimes tricky sequence of paperwork that must be filed.
Injuries Associated With Long Island Slip and Fall Accidents
Long Island slip and fall accidents can result in permanent injuries, some of which are catastrophic or even fatal. Such injuries may include:
- Broken or fractured bones, especially legs and hips
- Concussions and other traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Cuts, gashes, and open wounds
- Neck, back, and spinal cord injuries, some of which may result in partial or complete paralysis
- Internal bleeding
Long Island slip and fall injuries may require expensive emergency treatment, which may include surgery, long hospital stays, and the need for in-hospital rehabilitation. What may seem like a minor slip and fall accident can become dangerous very quickly, especially if a person has sustained a head or brain injury.
The Statute of Limitations for Filing a Long Island Slip and Fall Lawsuit
Every state has laws that govern time limitations for filing a lawsuit, and New York is no exception. In New York, slip and fall lawsuits generally must be filed within three years of the incident.
The following statutes of limitations apply to Long Island slip and fall accidents:
- Personal Injury: A person who has sustained slip and fall injuries on Long Island has three years from the date of the injury to file a personal injury lawsuit against the alleged negligent party, often the owner(s) of the property where the accident happened.
- Wrongful Death: If a person sustains fatal injuries resulting from a Long Island slip and fall accident, the representative of the deceased individual’s estate has two years from the date of the loved one’s death to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Some exceptions may apply to the statutes of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death. However, injury victims wishing to pursue legal action should not count on being able to take advantage of these exceptions: It’s important to contact a trustworthy slip and fall attorney on Long Island who can accurately calculate how long you have to pursue your claim and ensure that your case is filed on time.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Am I Entitled to Compensation if I Am Partly to Blame for My Long Island Slip and Fall Injuries?
You might be, depending on the circumstance. Under New York law, a person injured in a slip and fall accident is not barred from receiving monetary compensation if they are partly to blame for the accident. Instead, the injured person’s recovery may be reduced by the percentage they are found to be at fault. For example, if a slip and fall case goes to trial and a jury finds that the injured person was 40% at fault and a property owner was 60% at fault, the injured person’s monetary award may be reduced by 40%. This apportionment of fault is called “comparative negligence.”
What Happens if Another Customer on the Property Played a Role in Causing My Slip and Fall Accident?
If a person other than a property owner played a role in causing a slip and fall accident, any potential lawsuit might also involve this other person. However, regardless of whether another person played a role in causing a slip and fall accident, the property owner is still likely to be a party to the lawsuit simply because the accident happened on their property.
If My Slip and Fall Accident Happens at Work, Should I File a Workers’ Compensation Claim or a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
Workers’ compensation benefits are meant to help injured workers recover so they can return to the workplace. Personal injury claims are based on fault, so if fault can’t be established, workers’ compensation may be the only option. However, if a slip and fall accident was caused by someone other than the employer, you may also be entitled to file a personal injury lawsuit. The decision to pursue a workers’ compensation claim, a personal injury claim or both should be discussed with an experienced slip and fall attorney on Long Island who can help you best stand up for your legal rights.
If My Slip and Fall Injuries Are Permanent, Will I Receive More Compensation From a Long Island Lawsuit or Settlement?
It depends: All cases are different. For example, if a defendant does not have sufficient money to pay substantial compensation to you for your injuries, then it may be difficult to collect what you deserve from that defendant. Some insurance policies have limits on how much compensation is available to an injured person in a slip and fall accident, so the amount of compensation you receive may be partly out of your control. The specific injuries you sustained and other damages you incurred will play a part as well.
How Many Slip and Fall Cases Go to Trial?
Most calculations show that only between 2% and 5% of cases go to court. It’s quite common for a slip and fall case to be settled before it needs to go to court. That’s why it’s crucial to seek guidance from talented slip and fall attorneys. Long Island residents can count on our team to make sure they receive maximum compensation.
What Is the Average Settlement for a Slip and Fall Accident?
According to the CDC, the hospital bills for most slip and fall accidents total around $30,000, and you can expect most settlements to at least cover your medical expenses. Falls on snow and ice tend to cause more injuries, larger medical bills, and higher settlements.
How Is Slip and Fall Pain and Suffering Calculated?
Calculations for pain and suffering vary among cases and are dependent on the skill of one’s lawyer when it comes to making the argument as to the severity of the pain and suffering of the plaintiff. The extent and likelihood of rehabilitation and recovery are also taken into consideration. The experienced lawyers at Parker Waichman are masters at maximizing a client’s award for pain and suffering.
How Long Does it Usually Take to Settle a Slip and Fall Case?
It can vary greatly depending on the case and how long it takes to prove liability. The greater the damages and liability, the easier it is to prove your case and the faster it will reach a resolution.
Can You Sue a Hotel for Falling?
If you can prove that you fell and injured yourself on hotel property and the fall was a result of the hotel’s failure to remove a hazard, then you can certainly sue the hotel and pursue a slip and fall injury lawsuit.
Contact Parker Waichman Today to Schedule Your Free Consultation
If you or a family member have suffered injuries resulting from a Long Island slip and fall accident and you believe someone else is at fault for causing the accident, you should consider speaking with our slip and fall attorneys. Long Island residents can count on our nationally-recognized firm: We’ve helped numerous clients recover compensation for injuries they sustained because of someone else’s negligent conduct, to the tune of more than $2 billion and counting. We also have attorneys and paralegals who speak many languages, including Spanish, to help our diverse client base. If you would like to discuss your potential case with one of our attorneys, contact us today by calling 1-800-YOUR-LAWYER (1-800-968-7529) to schedule a free consultation.
How Do I Get My Police Report?
Within hours of an arrest or accident, a police report is generated by the investigating officer who inputs the case information. If the case is ongoing, it may be difficult to obtain the report or you may only be able to get the “public portion” until the case has wrapped up and any charges have been filed. After the police investigation has concluded, your attorney will have access to the full police report and you can ask them for a copy. The only other way to obtain a copy of a police report is to go to your local government website and request a report by filling out a form and either submitting it electronically, via mail, or in person depending on the instructions listed on your local government’s website. There may be a fee associated with requesting a copy of a police report and it may take several days after the incident for the report to be available.
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