usually gets bruised is our ego. But when a fall leaves you with long-lasting and painful injuries, two things should be at the top of your list: medical attention and legal counsel.
Fortunately, the legal team of Christina Pendleton & Associates is experienced in handling personal injury cases. Slipping and falling in a restaurant or business falls into the scope of premises liability, and victims may be eligible to seek compensatory damages.
If you or someone you know has experienced a mishap, our slip and fall accident attorneys in Petersburg offer a free legal consultation to discuss your case’s value.
The Cost of a Slip and Fall Accident
If your accident is the result of a property owner’s negligence, they may be liable and legally required to pay you a settlement that covers the costs of your injury treatment and loss of wages.
Compensation packages for personal injury often include:
- Costs of fees for accident-related medical evaluation and testing
- Ongoing treatment needed to recover from the slip and fall incident
- Travel expenses for treatment
- Urgent care or emergency room costs
- Lost income during the recovery process
- Lost earning wages for those left permanently disabled
- Emotional anguish
- Pain and suffering
Insurance agencies will attempt to avoid paying for all of your accident-related expenses. However, having a lawyer will communicate to them that you have a legal team willing to fight for the losses owed to you.
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What to Do After a Slip and Fall Accident
There are things that you can do to stop insurance companies from diminishing your injuries before a claim is even filed. If you want to strengthen your case and get the maximum settlement amount following a slip and fall accident:
- Observe what caused your accident. For example, there may be loose carpeting or a wet floor that lacks a caution sign.
- Take pictures of the area where the accident occurred, including any noticeable obstructions or dangerous conditions.
- Request that the business provides a copy of the security camera footage in case it captured the incident.
- Ask witnesses for their account of what happened. Record their statements and gather contact information so that they may be reached for testimony if needed.
- File an incident report with the business or police, and save a copy for your records.
- Go to an emergency room or doctor’s office immediately following the fall to have your injuries evaluated, documented, and treated.
If you have sustained an injury in a commercial office or public place, you deserve a fair shot at receiving compensation. Our Petersburg slip and fall lawyers can refer you to specialists like a chiropractor, or handle other tasks that will lighten the load while you recover from your injuries.
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Virginia Slip and Fall Premise Liability
Properties are responsible for providing a duty of care to their patrons. They are required to maintain a safe environment for anyone on the premises. If you are injured because the staff neglected to clean up a spill or warn you about a loose floor tile, you can file a premises liability case against the owner for compensation.
To avoid premises liability cases, property owners can:
- Inspect their homes or business premises regularly for unsafe conditions
- Repair visible obstructions or dangerous areas
- Properly communicate risks by use of warning signage
Trespassers are not owed a duty of care, but if permission is given to be on their premises, they will be accountable for incidents that result in injury.
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Contributory Negligence Rule
While negligence regulations vary from state to state, in Virginia, you can be held partially responsible. Contributory negligence is a standard that describes how blame is determined for your slip and fall injuries. If your case goes to trial, a jury will determine whether:
- The property owner was at fault
- You were at fault
- You and the property owner each share fault
You could be partially at fault for your injuries if you kicked over a bucket of water and then slipped or if you failed to see a doctor after your fall and your health worsened. Your settlement amount will be reduced in proportion to how much you are to blame for the incident.
Luckily, your personal injury lawyer will advise you of any regulations that apply to Petersburg residents so that you can avoid reduced compensation.
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Statute of Limitations in Virginia
The amount of time allotted for a personal injury claim varies by state. This is called the statute of limitations. Code of Virginia § 8.01-243 states that victims have up to two years from the date of their slip and fall occurrence in order to file a lawsuit for compensation.
Unfortunately, there are no exceptions so If you file after the two-year time frame, your claim will be dismissed automatically. This is why it is important to have an experienced slip and fall lawyer on your side to manage documents and important deadlines.
Proving Liability for a Slip and Fall Accident in Petersburg
Your Petersburg injury attorney will utilize witness statements, expert testimonies, and any evidence collected to prove fault. Examining liability in order to hold the appropriate party responsible will need to prove the following:
- The property owner was aware of the hazardous condition
- The dangerous area or condition was blatantly visible
- That you had full permission to be on the property at the time that the fall occurred
Once those are addressed, your lawyer will use defense arguments to verify that the fall led to your specified injuries.
Find a Slip and Fall Injury Attorney Near You
In hiring Pendleton Law Firm as your legal team, we will begin working on your case after the first session. We manage injury cases from beginning to end by interviewing employees and witnesses, examining evidence, negotiating settlement offers, and more.
Our slip and fall accident and injury lawyers in Petersburg have proven successful in helping injured clients with compassionate but assertive legal support. If we can’t win your case, you won’t owe us for our services. Contact our offices today for your free consultation.
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