Washington, DC Slip & Fall Accident Attorney
Injured on Another’s Property? Call (202) 659-8600
Slip, trips, and falls are leading causes of injuries – in the home, workplace, and public areas. While some of these may be “accidents,” many are preventable. In fact, slip and falls commonly result from the negligence of property owners who fail to take reasonable steps to address potential hazards. If you or someone you love has been injured in a slip and fall accident, you may have the right to seek financial compensation for your damages.
Whether your slip and fall case stems from an incident in a private home or housing complex, a commercial business, or our city streets or subways in Washington DC, an experienced slip and fall accident lawyer from Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. can help you better understand your rights and options.
Our attorneys have more than 90 years of combined experience and have recovered over $500 million for clients. We serve residents throughout D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. Call (202) 659-8600 to speak with a lawyer about your case.
Slip & Falls: Common Causes, Injuries & Damages
Slip and fall accidents can occur just about anywhere and at any time – whether it’s a residential house, a public or private building, restaurant or commercial business, parking garage or sidewalk, or Metro station. While people slip, trip, and fall for all sorts of reasons, those caused by the mistakes, oversight, or negligence of others may provide the basis for victims to pursue personal injury lawsuits against the responsible party.
Common Causes of Slip & Falls:
- Wet and slippery floors (i.e. spills)
- Ice and snow (i.e. icy walkways)
- Narrow or broken staircases / railings
- Poor lighting or lack of lighting
- Cracked or broken sidewalks
- Loose carpeting or uneven floors
- Debris and tripping hazards
- Open or uncovered holes
Many of these hazards can and often should be addressed – usually by property owners, public entities, and others who have a legal obligation for doing so. The failures of those parties can have serious consequences.
Common Types of Injuries:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Neck and back injuries
- Concussions / brain injuries
- Chipped teeth and dental injuries
- Dislocation, sprains, and lacerations
- Scarring and long-term disability
Common Types of Damages:
- Medical bills (both for past treatment and future needs)
- Lost wages from missing work
- Lost future earnings
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional or psychological injuries
Taking Legal Action: Your Right to Damages
Slip and fall accidents usually involve the legal concept of premises liability. As the name implies, these cases involve premises owners who are liable for injuries and damages victims suffer on their properties. However, a slip and fall and resulting injury does not necessarily mean you will be compensated. You still need to pursue legal action, prove your case, and deal with any disputes or denials made by property owners and insurance companies.
Though every case is unique, there are some common elements victims must prove when they bring civil lawsuits against a premises owner. That means in order to prevail in your claim, you will need to demonstrate that:
- The property owner had a legal duty to keep you safe – This legal duty can vary depending on where the accident occurred, and who you were in relation to the owner (i.e. premises liability usually covers invited guests and people who patronize public businesses, but there may be a different standard of those who trespass or enter a property without permission).
- The premises owner failed to meet their legal duty – When the property owner owed you a duty of care, you’ll need to prove how they failed to meet it (which is called a breach of duty). This breach often arises from negligence and failing to address potential hazards an owner knew or should have known about (i.e. not cleaning up a spill they knew a guest might slip on).
- You were injured as a result of the owner’s failure – In your claim, you will also need to prove you were injured as a result of the property owner’s failure to address potential hazards and take reasonable steps. If you suffered physical injuries and obtained medical treatment, and / or you injuries caused other harm in other areas of your life (i.e. your work, finances, emotional well-being, etc.), you’ll need to establish those damages.
- You should be provided compensation from the owner – If you have injuries and damages caused by another’s conduct or failures, you shouldn’t have to be the one to pay for them. That belief is why we have a civil justice system, and why personal injury lawsuits are a powerful and effective tool for ensuring victims recover the funds to cover their losses.
Reaching a resolution in a slip and fall matter looks different in every case, especially if there are unique issues involved – such as a public or government entity as a defendant, or a child who may have been unknowingly trespassing at the time of the injury. These and other issues can make for complicated cases, but they can be effectively handled with the help of attorneys who know the law, how to fight corporations and insurance companies, and what steps to take when it comes to negotiating or litigating a fair resolution.
Business Liability: Who’s Responsible?
Slip, trip, and fall accidents happen on a regular basis, but not every slip and fall results in a civil injury claim. The ones that do are generally those which were caused by the negligence of businesses – including business owners and their employees – that failed to meet their legal duty for keeping visitors safe from preventable harm.
This legal duty obligates businesses to take reasonable actions when there are potential slip, trip, or fall hazards on their properties they either:
- Caused themselves and failed to address; or
- Knew about or should have known about, and failed to address.
Failing to take these steps doesn’t only put customers at risk; it’s an act of negligence that constitutes a “breach” of their legal duty – and something that may make them potentially liable for any accidents, injuries, and related damages victims suffer as a result. Whether the business is a grocery store, a restaurant, a hotel, a public / government business, or some other type of commercial entity, they often owe patrons a duty of care.
Request a FREE Case Review Anywhere in the DMV
Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. has been serving residents of Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia for decades, and has recovered over $500 million in verdicts and settlements – including successful recoveries in a range of slip and fall cases. If you have a question about your rights and the next steps in your legal journey, our team is available to review your case and discuss how we can use our experience and resources to help.
Contact us today at (202) 659-8600 to get started. Case evaluations are free and confidential, and there’s no fee unless a recovery is made in your case.