Did you know that injuries from falls are the leading cause of emergency room visits? According to the CDC, one in every four older adults will suffer a fall and over 800,000 patients are admitted to the hospital due to injuries from falls. Falls are also the third leading cause of death and the leading cause of traumatic brain injuries from unintentional injuries. Falls can also cause severe injuries, including: back injuries, head injuries and hip fractures.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a slip and fall injury on public or someone else’s property, it is important that you understand your legal rights. The attorneys at Pacific West Injury Law Firm have handled thousands of injury cases and can assist you in understanding your legal options. You may be able to pursue legal action following a slip and fall accident at a shopping mall, grocery store, hotel or motel, office building, or stadium.
If you or a loved one were injured in a slip and fall accident, our experienced slip and fall attorneys may be able to help you receive compensation for your injuries, medical bills and lost wages. Contact us today at 702-602-HURT for a free consultation and how Pacific West Injury Law Firm can help you.
Where Do Slip & Falls Happen?
Slip and fall injuries can happen just about anywhere. However, slip and fall accidents tend to happen at certain locations more than others. These include: stores, restaurants, theaters, stadiums, arenas,hotels & motels, retirement homes, private homes and places of work.
Stores: The management at retail stores, grocery stores, malls and shopping centers have a responsibility to ensure the safety of their customers. This means that they should clean up spills quickly, make sure that aisles are not cluttered or blocked and that signs are posted when floors are wet and slippery following custodial work.
Restaurants: Oftentimes, both customers and employees of restaurants (especially fast food establishments) face slip and fall hazards from spilled liquids and clutter.
Theaters/Stadiums/Arenas: These public venues are normally connected by a maze of ramps, staircases, elevators and escalators. If these things are not properly maintained and/or well lit, they are often cause for slip and fall injuries. Bleachers and seating are also another cause of serious injury in theaters, stadiums and arenas.
Hotels/Motels: NSU Hospitality reports that slip and falls are the top cause of hotel injuries each year, with 70 percent occurring on flat walking surfaces.
Retirement Homes: The elderly and infirm living in nursing homes and other residential care environments are particularly vulnerable to serious injury in slip-and-fall accidents. Retirement homes should know which residents are at-risk for falling, and follow protocols for monitoring and assisting these individuals.
Private Homes: Homeowners also have responsibility for the safety of visitors. A slip-and-fall accident caused by a hole in the yard, slippery floors, a broken step or cluttered stairs at a private residence can cause serious fall injuries.
Places of Work: Federal and state regulations require employers to provide employees with training, safety equipment and other safeguards to avoid falls and injuries at construction sites, manufacturing plants, offices and other job sites. The National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI) reports that 85 percent of workers’ compensation claims are attributed to employees slipping on slick floors.
A victim of a slip and fall accident can take legal action against the owner or renter of the property if the owner or renter is found to be negligent about fixing a property hazard or failed to warn of a hazard that could potentially cause harm to others.
Homeowners and businesses carry liability insurance to cover these types of accidents. The attorneys at Pacific West Injury Law Firm will negotiate with the insurance company to seek compensation for your losses. You should never hesitate in speaking with a personal injury attorney because you are concerned about suing a local store owner or even a neighbor. The compensation that you could potentially receive does not come out of their pocket. It comes from an insurance settlement.
How Do Slip & Fall Accidents Happen?
When you are out in public or at another individual’s property, there are certain factors that will increase your chances of slipping and falling. Common reasons for slip and fall accidents include: cluttered walkways, slippery floors, ditches and potholes, damaged floors and stairs, inadequate lighting, ice and snow, and abrupt changes in walking surfaces.
Cluttered Walkways: Merchandise, supplies, equipment, trash or debris in store aisles, corridors or walkways can create a tripping hazard. When shelves or displays are overstocked and items fall from them, this creates slip- or trip-and-fall hazards.
Slippery Floors: Spills or tracked-in rainwater should be promptly cleaned up. After floors are mopped, signs should warn visitors of wet floors.
Ditches and Potholes: Holes, trenches and other openings beside the road, in parking lots and in other paved areas should be covered or marked with warning signs or fencing.
Damaged Floors and Stairways: Property owners should not neglect torn carpet, loose floor tiles, floorboards, loose stair treads or broken handrails. They can shift under a person’s weight and cause the individual to slip and fall. Stairs that are made too steep and/or with narrow treads can cause falls, as well.
Inadequate Lighting: Poor lighting makes it difficult to see stairway steps and to recognize changes in a walking surface. Moving from a lighted space into the dark can also cause a temporary vision loss that can result in a fall.
Ice and Snow: Property owners are responsible for removing snow and ice that accumulates on sidewalks, steps, stairs, parking lots and other walkways. In some cases, local ordinances specify how much time a property owner has after a snowfall or other weather event to clear slippery sidewalks, driveways, and steps.
Abrupt Changes in Walking Surfaces: Changes in the height of the floor or ground should be adequately marked, such as with a bright yellow stripe. Property owners must maintain flooring surfaces to ensure that wear and tear do not cause holes or uneven transitions to develop that create tripping hazards.
Types of Slip & Fall Injuries
When you are hurt in a slip and fall accident, the amount of compensation that you will receive from the party responsible for the accident can vary depending upon how badly you were injured, whether the individual was fully or only partly at fault and what insurance policies are available.Common injuries that occur as a result of a slip and fall accident include: Neck, back and shoulder injuries, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injury, knee injuries, fractures and death.
Neck, Back & Shoulder Injuries: These injuries can include damage to the soft tissues including the muscles, joints, and ligaments. Strains, sprains, and herniated discs can result from falls.
Spinal Cord Injuries: NFSI reports that falls are the second most common cause of spinal cord damage in adults over the age of 65. Anyone who falls on their back could potentially damage the spinal cord and experience full or partial paralysis.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): Hitting your head in a fall can cause you to develop a brain injury, which may lead to cognitive impairment, bleeding in the brain, seizures, and other symptoms. The consequences of a traumatic brain injury from a fall can be very severe, if not fatal.
Knee Injuries: Injuries to the knee from a fall may include damage to soft tissues including sprains, strains, and tears.
Fractures: NFSI reports that falls cause 87 percent of bone fractures in adults ages 65 and up. Hip fractures are a common result of slip and falls among the elderly, but anyone of any age can break a bone in a fall.
Death: The CDC reports that falls are the leading cause of death for adults ages 65 and up. Young children also are especially vulnerable to fatal head injuries as a result of a slip and fall.
Slip and fall injuries can result in serious consequences and you may have to undergo expensive medical treatments and rehabilitation. You may experience ongoing issues with pain and your ability to work may be severely affected.
Nevada law allows you to be “made whole” for injuries and losses caused by another’s carelessness or lack of regard for safety. You can seek compensation for all of the costs and consequences of fall accidents, including medical bills, lost income/wages, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. If the fall caused fatal injury, then the surviving family members can claim compensation for loss of companionship and other wrongful death damages.
Taking Legal Action
If you were injured in a slip and fall accident, you may be able to file a personal injury claim against the property owner or the individual who was renting and responsible for the maintenance on the property. In order to make a successful slip and fall accident claim, you will need to prove that:
- Your injuries resulted from a fall on the defendant’s property.
- The property owner or renter had a legal obligation to you to make the property safe. This means you had a legal right to be on the property, and were not a trespasser.
- The owner fell short in fulfilling that obligation
- You suffered harm as a result of the owner’s negligence.
Proving a slip and fall case can be complicated, but if you were seriously hurt on someone else’s property, you should explore the potential to make a claim. The Las Vegas slip and fall attorneys at Pacific West Injury Law Firm will review the details of your accident and discuss your options for pursuing a claim.
There are steps you can take to protect your rights after a fall, including:
- See a doctor
- Report the accident
- Record witnesses
- Save accident records
- Stay off of social media
- Contact an attorney before accepting any settlement
Pacific West Injury Law: Las Vegas Slip & Fall Attorneys Can Help
When you or a loved one suffers a slip and fall injury, there are two ways to resolve your personal injury or wrongful death claim, and to get the compensation you deserve. One option is to negotiate a settlement agreement, giving up your right to sue in exchange for payment. The second option is to take your claim to court and prove your case.
Many attorneys are good at negotiating settlements or representing clients in court, but may not be experienced at both. The team at Pacific West Injury Law Firm are both great settlement negotiators and trial lawyers. The dedicated Las Vegas slip and fall lawyers at Pacific West Injury Law Firm focus on settlement agreements, using our negotiation skills to obtain a full settlement without going to court.
To learn more about Pacific West Injury Law Firm and about how our Las Vegas slip and fall lawyers can help you to get the money you deserve, contact us online or by phone at 702-602-HURT today to set up your FREE consultation.
Our Las Vegas office handles claims across the state of Nevada.