Premise Liability Lawyers in Everett
Not only are slip and fall accidents much more common than you might imagine, but these seemingly simple accidents can also cause extremely serious injuries. When you suffer a serious slip and fall, there is much more than embarrassment at stake. Your injuries could result in an inability to return to work for weeks, months, or even longer, medical expenses that seem never-ending, and the necessity to make adjustments to your day-to-day life.
According to Arbill.com, about 65 percent of all fall-related injuries occur from falls on same-level walking surfaces. More than a million Americans suffer a slip and fall every year; at least a third of those will suffer moderate to severe injuries, including brain trauma, hip fractures, neck and back injuries, and other fractures. The most common fractures from a slip and fall occur in the spine, hips, forearms, legs, ankles, pelvis, upper arms, and hands.
Slip and fall accidents are serious incidents that can happen in an instant, requiring professional legal representation to recover equitable compensation. Owners must keep public areas safe to avoid slip and fall accidents. When the area is not safe, the owner may be liable for accidents and the resulting injuries.
The Kadish Twersky Law Firm represents slip and fall victims in the Puget Sound area (Everett, Seattle, Snohomish, and King and Skagit Counties). We have more than 75 years of combined legal experience with slip and fall accidents and injury claims. Our firm has merged with Palace Law, adding even more benefits for our clients through access to our entire team of highly experienced Washington attorneys.
When is a Property Owner Responsible for a Slip and Fall Accident?
You have the right to be warned of any hazard which could potentially result in a slip and fall. When a known hazard is ignored, a reasonable person could assume an accident could result. Poor lighting conditions can disguise defects in walking surfaces and any area where the public walks must be well-lit and clearly visible. When considering liability, it must be determined whether the property owner took reasonable precautions to avoid accidents. The owner, manager, or employee must have been able to reasonably foresee that a failure to take action could potentially create a dangerous condition and that the dangerous condition could lead to injury.
The determining factor in this equation is time. As an example, if an individual spills a drink on a grocery store floor and mere seconds later, you walk directly into the spill, taking a tumble as a result, the owner could not have been reasonably expected to remove the hazard prior to your arrival. If, however, the spill occurred half an hour ago, and two store employees walked by the spill without taking action, your ability to prove negligence becomes much stronger. If boxes were stacked haphazardly in areas where people typically walk and a slip and fall was the result, then the owner of the property is likely negligent.
What is Reasonable Care?
You may wonder how the term “reasonable” is defined as it relates to a slip and fall claim. A court will determine whether the owner, manage,r or employee of the company acted in the manner a reasonably prudent person would have done under similar circumstances. If the owner was aware of the hazard which caused the slip and fall, then it would be reasonable to assume the hazard would have been remedied—or, at the very least, a hazard sign would have been put into place. The issue of reasonableness is extremely important in determining liability following a slip and fall accident. There is also the issue of whether your own behavior was reasonable.
As an example, suppose ice and snow have been tracked into the entryway of your local grocery store. The owner of the grocery store is aware of the slip and fall risks, placing a sign regarding the slippery floor, as well as orange hazard cones in the area. If you completely ignore these warning signs and suffer a slip and fall accident, then the owner of the grocery store may not be liable for your injuries.
Where Do Most Slip and Fall Accidents Occur?
Although a slip and fall accident can occur virtually anywhere, at any time, the majority of slip and fall accidents occur in grocery stores, restaurants, theme parks, elevators and escalators, retail stores, nightclubs, and parking lots. The area surrounding a public swimming pool is also a common area where slip and falls occur due to the wet surface. Winter increases the number of slip and fall accidents as ice and snow are tracked into entryways, causing unsuspecting guests to slip and fall.
What are the Primary Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents?
Although there can be many different causes of a slip and fall accident, the following are among the most common:
- Changes in flooring level;
- Changes in floor surfaces;
- Loose or torn carpeting;
- Rugs placed on a slippery surface;
- Ice, grease, water, or other spills which cause slippery floors;
- Dirty flooring;
- Recently mopped flooring;
- Broken or cracked sidewalks;
- Potholes in parking lots;
- Raised or recessed edges on flooring;
- Abrupt floor surface changes (such as tile to carpeting);
- An unexpected slope or raised area in the floor;
- Obstructions in the walking path;
- Poor lighting in the area;
- Unusually steep stairways;
- Lack of handrails on stairways, or
- Strobe lighting.
How Kadish Twersky Can Help Following Your Slip and Fall
If you are dealing with the financial and physical aftermath of a slip and fall caused by the negligence of another person or entity, it is imperative that you seek legal representation. Slip and fall claims can be complex; having a highly experienced attorney in your corner who will aggressively work on your behalf to ensure you receive equitable compensation is key to the success of your claim. The highly qualified Kadish Twersky attorneys, along with the knowledgeable Palace Law legal team will work together to ensure you receive equitable compensation for your injuries, including your medical expenses, pain, and suffering, lost wages and lost future wages. Contact Kadish Twersky today.