Did You Slip Or Trip Because Of Unsafe Conditions?
Slip-and-fall accidents get a bad reputation because some people fake the accident or exaggerate the injuries. At The Law Offices of Gonzalez & Associates, we know that people do fall because of real hazards and that the injuries can be very serious.
We have a good track record of advocating for victims of slip-and-fall and trip-and-fall accidents throughout Florida. Our attorneys know how to establish that the property owner failed in a duty to keep our client safe, and we press vigorously for the full compensation our clients are owed.
The Elements Of A Slip-And-Fall Accident
A slip-and-fall claim is a premises liability claim. The legal doctrine is that property owners have a duty to the safety of patrons, tenants and visitors. You might have grounds for a lawsuit against the proprietor if you suffered a falling injury because of:
- A slippery floor (puddles, spills or squished food)
- Tripping hazards (boxes, cords, torn rugs, etc.)
- Falling merchandise
- Missing handrail or broken steps
- A dark stairway or hallway
- A recently mopped or waxed floor without caution signs
- An unexpected step-up or drop-off
- Uneven concrete on the sidewalk or parking lot
We take action to photograph the hazard before the property owner has a chance to cover it up. We also seek witnesses, security camera footage, maintenance records and other evidence of an unsafe condition or a failure to warn.
The other element of a slip-and-fall claim is the harm you have sustained. We document your pain and suffering, and any lasting disability, plus the financial impact such as medical expenses, lost income and future care needs.
Property Owner Defenses
Under Florida law, it can be tricky to secure personal injury compensation in some slip-and-fall cases:
- How long was the hazard there? If you slipped on a “transitory foreign substance” such as a spilled liquid or squished food in a grocery store or restaurant, you must prove that the owner had knowledge of the danger and reasonable time to clean it up or that such hazards were common (and commonly ignored) at that business.
- Was the victim partly to blame? Under the doctrine of comparative negligence, your compensation can be barred or reduced if you were partly at fault. The defense may argue that you were in an unauthorized area, that the hazard was obvious, that you were not watching where you were going, that you missed or ignored caution signs, or that your own actions made your injuries worse. If you are deemed comparatively negligent, your compensation may be reduced proportionately. For example, if you were found 40% at fault, you would only receive 60% of your calculated damages.
Our attorneys work to keep the focus on the property owner’s negligence, neglected upkeep or willful disregard for safety. We will not let them off the hook by shifting the blame to you.
Explore Your Possible Slip-And-Fall Claim
We have brought successful actions against supermarkets, bars and restaurants, retail stores, apartment buildings and condos, homeowners, hotels and resorts, amusement parks, sports venues and other properties. To find out if you have grounds to sue, arrange a free consultation at 866-626-4257 or contact us online. We have offices in Miami, Orlando and Florida.
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