Slip & Fall Accidents

SLIP & FALL ACCIDENTS

Dangerous Condition.  You may have a successful slip and fall, or trip and fall, case if the fall resulted from a dangerous condition on the property.  Lawyers refer to these types of cases as premises liability cases.  Sometimes, a dangerous condition on the property can include a slippery condition, a stairway with no hand-railing, inadequate lighting, stairs that are not built according to the applicable building code, or  a floor that is too slippery when its wet.  You can also show that something is a dangerous condition if someone else fell because of the same condition that you did.  Usually, in order to make a recovery, you must show that you fell or tripped because of the dangerous condition on the property and the owner of the property knew or should have known about but failed to warn you about it or fix it before you fell.

Witnesses.  Witnesses at the scene of a slip and fall can be very important.  Sometimes witnesses who work for the owner of the property will make damning statements after seeing you fall.  These statements can include, “I forgot to pick that up” or “I forgot to put de-icing down” or “I’m sorry.  This is my fault.”  These statements can be admissible in court and can prove that the owner of property knew about the dangerous condition before you fell and have accepted some responsibility for your fall.

Duty to Keep Property Safe.  The duty to keep property safe can be impacted by the type of property you were on when you got hurt.  The law often requires that a store or business open to the public provide greater care to keep the property safe.  This is because the store or business is inviting you to their property to spend money or transact business.  When visiting a neighbor or friend, they may have to do less to ensure that the property is safe.

Government Property.  If you fall on a government owned property, you may have to file claims earlier than in other cases.  This is because government entities often have special laws that protect them.

Helpful Links

Clearwater County Ordinance No. 43 Building Code
Idaho State Building Safety Rules
Washington State Building Code Policies, Procedures and Guidelines

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