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Slip & Fall

A slip and fall may not sound serious, but it can actually result in some very serious injuries. Fractures of the wrist or hip are not uncommon, especially among the elderly, and can involve a lengthy and painful recovery period. Cuts and fractures to the face are also possible, and these injuries may be disfiguring if not treated promptly and properly. Of course, a fall also creates a risk of serious head injury or neck and back injury, including traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury. These injuries are ranked among the most serious and costliest of personal injuries. A slip and fall should always be taken seriously, and prompt medical attention should be obtained.

Some of the most common causes of slip and fall accidents include:

  • Slippery, cracked, uneven or obstructed sidewalks
  • Broken steps and stairs
  • Broken or missing handrails
  • Slippery floors due to spills or water tracked in during inclement weather
  • Unmarked steps or ramps between "split-level" areas in stores
  • Obstructions on the floor or in the aisle of a store
  • Carpet defects, such as tears or bumps

Slip and Fall premises liability cases can be difficult to prove. After an accident, it must often be shown that the property owner knew or should have known of the dangerous condition yet failed to fix it. In the case of a temporary condition, such as a food or drink spill in a grocery store or restaurant, the question of how long the condition existed before the accident can be crucial. There are several different ways to establish and prove this fact, but it takes an experienced trial attorney to know how to prepare and present a persuasive case.

Keep in mind that slip and fall accidents may occur on public or private property. Public property accidents may occur in government buildings or on sidewalks and grounds of government buildings, stepping onto or off of the curb, in the street, or getting on or off a bus, train or other means of public transit. The procedure for making a claim against a municipality or government agency is very different from a claim against a private property owner, and the timelines are much shorter.

Make sure you contact an attorney right away to protect your rights,and make sure your lawyer is experienced in cases of municipal liability as well as private civil lawsuits. In New York City, contact Polanco & Associates, PLLC.

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