Did you know that slip and fall accidents accounted for 17% of all work-related fatalities in 2020?
Even if the fall isn’t fatal, it may cause a serious injury. This is all the more reason to protect your rights in this situation. If the accident occurred on someone else’s property, you may be entitled to compensation.
Of course, this is only true if you take immediate steps to preserve your case. Here’s what you need to do following a slip and fall accident.
1. Seek Medical Assistance
After an accident, your health is priority number one. Even if the injury doesn’t seem serious, go to a doctor right away. It’s possible to hit your head and think you’re fine, only to encounter complications later.
Seeking accident help is also important because it helps your case. If you end up going to court, having medical records strengthens your claim. Without them, the court is more likely to think that your claim is frivolous.
2. Take Photos and Find Witnesses
Use your phone or camera to document your injuries and the accident scene. Take photos of any conditions that may have led to the fall, such as broken stairs. If you slipped on a substance, take a sample of it for evidence.
If there are witnesses of the accident, get their contact information. Even if they didn’t see the fall itself, they can attest to the conditions in the area. They may also be able to provide key accident advice.
3. Report the Accident
Next, report the accident to the person responsible for the property where it occurred. Make sure not to blame anyone or accept fault for the accident. Simply report the facts and submit an incident report if asked.
After you report the accident, you may get a call from the property owner’s insurance company. No matter how friendly they sound, decline to give any statements. Refer them to your accident lawyer if you have one.
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4. Document Everything
While the accident is fresh in your mind, write down anything you remember about it. Use a journalistic approach with the five Ws:
- Who saw the accident?
- What happened before/after the accident?
- When did the accident happen?
- Where did it happen?
- Why did it happen?
You should also keep a separate folder for any documents relevant to your case. These include medical bills, incident reports, and so on. If you have employment records proving you missed work, include them as well.
5. Contact an Attorney
Slip and fall accidents are notoriously tricky. Other than collecting evidence and filing paperwork, you’ll need to prove liability. If you’re not familiar with legal jargon and procedures, the process can seem overwhelming.
The best way to protect your rights is to hire an experienced lawyer. If you’re not sure that you need help, find a firm that offers a free case evaluation. It’s best to do so early, before you inadvertently damage your case.
Handling a Slip and Fall Accident
If you know which steps to take after an accident, your odds of receiving compensation will rapidly increase. If you have an accident lawyer, all you’ll need to do is focus on your recovery while they’re doing their job.
Want to know more about how to handle a slip and fall accident? Keep reading our law-related content!