Slip And Fall Lawsuit Guide 2022 – Forbes Advisor

In order to win a slip and fall lawsuit, you will need to demonstrate that the property owner or occupier failed to fulfill their duty of care. Their irresponsible behavior must have created conditions that directly led to your fall and resulting injuries.

Owner vs. Occupier Negligence

Slip and fall cases can be complicated because sometimes the person who occupies the property is not the person who owns it. Therefore, you will need to understand which party had a responsibility to upkeep the space and what types of failures are considered negligent.

All property owners have a duty to maintain their premise. If they know of a hazard, or should be aware of one, and they do not fix it and/or provide appropriate warning, the property owner can be held responsible for resulting falls.

Occupiers also have an obligation to keep their premises reasonably safe. If they know, or should be aware of, a hazard in the space they are renting, they too must correct the problem and/or provide warning of the risk. If an occupier cannot fix the hazard themselves, they must promptly notify the property owner.

So, what if you are injured in a rented space? You generally would file a slip and fall lawsuit against the occupier if they failed to address the hazard. However, you may also have a claim against the property owner if:

  • The property owner had maintained control (such as of a common area in an apartment)
  • The property owner rented the property with hazards they failed to disclose
  • The lease agreement specifies that the owner is responsible for certain repair and maintenance tasks which the owner failed to fulfill.

An experienced attorney can help you to determine who the best person is to pursue a case against when you are injured in a slip and fall.

Components of Negligence

Whether you are pursuing a claim against a property owner or occupier, you still must prove negligence in order to get compensation in a slip and fall lawsuit. And there are a few specific components of negligence you must demonstrate including:

  • The property owner or occupier either caused the hazardous condition, had knowledge of it, or should have known of it if they exercised the level of care a reasonable person would have exhibited
  • The property owner/occupier failed to correct the condition if there was a reasonable opportunity to do so and/or failed to warn of the hazard
  • The owner/occupier’s failure was the direct cause of injury
  • The injury caused harm

Photographs from the accident scene, expert testimony, and medical records can all help you to prove negligence in a slip and fall lawsuit.

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