Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere. But when they happen outside of your own home, the injuries you suffer could be someone else’s fault – and you might be able to hold that party liable for any related damages like your medical bills and lost wages.
Being able to successfully pursue a fair amount of financial damages could hinge upon what you do immediately after your slip and fall accident, though. Knowing what to do right now can help you in the unfortunate event that you are ever in a slip and fall accident later.
Crucial Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident
Immediately after a slip and fall accident, you should:
- Call for help: If you think you have been seriously injured in your fall, then call 911 and ask for EMTs to come to your location. If you are in a commercial or retail location, like in a grocery store, then you should also call for help from an employee. Even if they do not have the training to provide emergency medical care, they will at least be aware of your accident and act as a witness to it later.
- Fill out an injury report: If it does not jeopardize your health to do so, fill out an injury report with the property manager, assuming that your slip and fall accident happened on a commercial property. An injury report will further validate that your accident did happen and that the property owner or manager is aware of it. Be clear about the details you do know, but do not feel pressured to try to explain too much that you are unsure about. For example, you can write down that you “badly hurt your leg” but you don’t have to speculate about the details of that injury.
- Ask about security cameras: While speaking with the property owner or on-duty manager in a commercial location or even a residential complex, ask about any security cameras that might have caught your slip and fall accident. Knowing about those cameras will come in handy later on. Don’t forget to also take pictures of the scene using your own phone’s camera to collect some photographic evidence of your own.
- Talk to eyewitnesses: In the event that people come to your side to help you, ask each of them to provide their contact information and a brief statement about what they saw. Eyewitness statements can often be the tipping point that convinces an insurance company to offer a settlement or a jury to rule in the plaintiff’s favor.
- See a medical professional: Lastly, if you were not seen by EMTs and taken to the hospital, then the next step is to get yourself to a trusted urgent care facility. A doctor’s diagnosis can uncover the extent of your injuries, which will be a major factor in determining your damages. Seeing a doctor within hours of your slip and fall accident also creates tangible evidence that your accident did happen, in case an insurance company wants to accuse you of fabricating the entire ordeal.
Final Step: Talk to a Lawyer
Once you have been treated for your injuries, the next step to take will be to call a local slip and fall accident attorney. Preferably, you will be able to hire someone the same day as your accident, which gives them the best chances of collecting the best evidence for your claim. In specific, your personal injury lawyer will want to notify the liable party and instruct them to preserve any evidence that they have of your slip and fall accident. Closed-circuit television footage of your accident captured on security cameras, for example, can make or break your case, and the liable party will be tempted to erase this footage unless explicitly warned not to by a legal professional.
Your slip and fall attorney can also get to work by connecting with your medical providers to understand the extent of your injuries. Depending on your doctor’s prognosis, your lawyer might be able to start calculating your damages or they might want to wait a little longer to get a better picture of the future medical care you will require and its costs.
When Every Penny Counts, Choose a Trusted Team
Charles G. Monnett III & Associates in Charlotte has been around since 1983, which means we have decades of experience standing up for the wrongfully injured in our communities. If you slipped and fell on someone else’s property, be it someone’s home or a retail store, then we should be your first choice for legal representation. We are a familiar team among local medical experts, law firms, courthouses, retailers, and more, so we know what it takes to form a convincing claim on your behalf. Find out more about our services by calling (704) 859-2003 or by contacting us online now.