Many people slip and fall on public or private property. Some do it outdoors, during the few days when the temperatures reach the freezing limits. Others end up on the floors of Lawrenceville Sugarloaf Mills, Square Shopping Center, Commons, or Market. Most have no idea that they can contact a personal injury lawyer and seek compensation.
Indeed, Georgia laws protect those who incur injuries due to someone else’s negligence. They hold the negligent party responsible for any losses the victim incurred. At Cain Injury Law, we have helped hundreds of clients seek compensation for their losses in Gwinnett County. In slip and fall cases, the losses may consist of any or all of the following:
- Property damage: any possessions the victim lost or damaged during the slip and fall
- Medical expenses: all costs the victim incurs while treating and recovering from their injuries
- Lost earnings: all wages the victim lost and may lose due to the sustained injuries
- Pain and suffering: severe physical and emotional pain resulting from the injuries or related treatments
Depending on the case circumstances, it may be possible to claim other losses as well. To find out if that is the case, the victim should consult a slip-and-fall attorney. The latter will be able to evaluate the claim and explain the applicable legal aspects. The most important law aspects Georgia slip and fall victims should be aware of are:
- Premises liability
- Comparative negligence
We will discuss both in the following lines.
Premises Liability and the Need for a Personal Injury Lawyer
Georgia Code Title 51, Chapter 3 establishes property owners’ duties towards persons on their property. This duty depends on the status of the respective person. They can be:
- Guests or invitees – They answer the implied or express invitation of the property owner.
- Licensees – They have the owner’s consent to be on the property for their own interests.
- Trespassers – Their presence on the property is without the owner’s knowledge or consent.
Property owners are responsible for keeping their premises and their invitees safe. They should eliminate any dangers and, when not possible, warn about their existence. They are responsible for any injuries their guests may incur due to their lack of reasonable precaution.
Those who incur slip and fall injuries as guests should hire a personal injury lawyer. The latter will know exactly what measures to take in order to obtain rightful compensation. If their client allows, they will take over all the hassles.
Licensees are responsible for their own safety. They have to be aware of their surroundings and protect themselves against dangers. To seek compensation from the owner, they will have to prove the latter’s wanton or willful actions. This is almost impossible without a good slip-and-fall accident attorney.
Property owners have no obligations towards adult trespassers. Children are an exception to the rule under the attractive nuisance doctrine. Owners should secure any items or areas that could represent an attraction to children passing by. Common examples include:
- Swimming pools
- Seasonal decorations
- Discarded appliances
- Abandoned vehicles
- Construction sites
- Ground holes
- Power cables
Cases involving children are more complicated by nature. The necessity to prove the presence of an attractive nuisance makes them even more difficult. They require the skills, knowledge, and experience of a personal injury attorney.
Comparative Negligence and Working with an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
Property owners are not always responsible for the injuries their visitors or licensees incur. Sometimes, the injuries are the result of the negligence of the latter. There are also situations when both parties are at fault. For example, shoppers have guest status while in the store.
If they slip and fall on a wet floor or due to some spill the store owner could have cleaned, they can claim compensation. If their shoes are dangerously slippery, they caused the spill, or they ignored a wet floor sign, things change. They are also different when the store customer slips and falls in a restricted area.
It goes without saying that the property owner will do everything possible to show that the victim shared fault. Georgia law sees fault as 100% and attributes percentages according to the available evidence. Thus, a claimant 40% at fault for their injuries, may still recover 60% of their losses.
The necessity to prove the property owner’s liability makes slip and fall claims similar to lawsuits. They are a job for an experienced Personal Injury Attorney. For those who have doubts, a brief overview of the claim process may help.
The Claim Process and How a Slip and Fall Attorney May Help
The process of seeking compensation after slip and fall injuries in Georgia is complex and lengthy. Here are the steps it involves:
- Identifying the party at fault. It could be the property owner, manager, or service provider. The claimant will have to prove their liability, so going after the right party is crucial.
- Gathering evidence. The claimant has to prove the defendant owed them a duty of care. They also have to show they breached that duty and, thus, caused the injuries.
- Filing the notice of claim. It means announcing to the defendant that the person injured on their property seeks compensation. The letter should briefly present the facts and the grounds for the claim. It is best to leave it to an experienced slip and fall attorney.
- Substantiating the claim. This means putting together all the evidence and justifying all the losses claimed. It takes experience and skills to keep the file clear and concise. Any loose ends or missing information could cost the claimant their compensation.
- Negotiating settlement terms. Properly substantiated claims will almost always receive a settlement offer as an answer. A personal injury lawyer is almost always able to negotiate better terms. If they cannot, they may file an appeal or even a civil lawsuit.
Let a Lawrenceville Personal Injury Attorney Help with Your Slip and Fall Case!
If you incurred injuries after slipping and falling due to someone else’s negligence, we can help. At Cain Injury Law, we take slip-and-fall cases seriously and do not rest until obtaining rightful compensations. You too can benefit from our services!
Call (678) 377-2246 and schedule a consultation with our Personal Injury Attorney. They will review your case for free, answer your questions, and guide your steps. With our help, obtaining the compensation you deserve will be easier than you think!