The idea that people could fake an injury while visiting someone else’s property is a common trope in the media. Unfortunately, insurance companies and businesses often use such cultural misconceptions for their own benefit.
Many people who end up hurt on someone else’s property, especially at a business, may find themselves fighting an uphill battle in their attempts to secure compensation for injuries and property damage losses.
Theoretically, premises liability claims are an option for anyone who gets hurt on someone else’s property, but both insurance companies and the lawyers representing businesses are often aggressive in their attempts to deny financial responsibility for someone’s injuries. When might you have a valid premises liability claim after slipping and then falling in a public place like a store?
When negligence led to your injury
Did you slip on the spilled contents of a box of oatmeal? Did you trip over a crumpled rug at the entranceway to the store? Such failures in property maintenance are often actionable negligence. Any situation that a normal person would consider dangerous or unsafe could potentially meet the standard for a negligence claim.
When negligence, such as inadequate cleaning or failure to maintain the building, causes someone to fall and get hurt, the property owner or business tenants may have liability for the incident. Reporting the slip-and-fall before leaving the store can be crucial, as it will help ensure that there are internal records of the spill or other issues that led to you falling.
When you have provable losses
Did you break your wrist and your phone when you fell? You may have over $1,000 in phone replacement costs and weeks of lost wages because of your injuries.
Typically, you need documentation that an injury or property damage loss occurred because of the incident. Any provable economic consequences could potentially contribute to the value of your claim, from hospital bills to lost wages.
It can be hard for someone who has never entered a courthouse before to really know if they have a valid premises liability claim after a slip-and-fall or to handle the process of negotiating with an insurance company. Bringing in professional help is often a key step for those who think they may have an actionable premises liability claim.