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Whether you’ve heard it referred to as a trip and fall, a slip and fall, and in some off cases a walk in fall – its important to be aware there are countless ways an individuals can be injured while walking, slipping or tripping and falling down to the ground. In fact, the issue has been so common over the years, that the phrase slip and fall has become one of the most common in the world of NYC personal injury law and even made its way into popular TV shows, and other facets of popular culture. The thing is, according to Mr. Joel Levine, Esq. the top personal injury lawyer Queens has in practice, that slip and fall accidents are fairly common during this time of year, especially in NYC – with the combination of slippery icy streets, slush and snow, and the overall visibility issues that come with winter weather. But its not just in the elements where such issues can cause an issue, in fact according to some statistics, indoor slip and fall accidents are even more prominent. As the top personal injury lawyer Queens has to offer, here are some of the most notable indoor slip and fall cases Mr. Levine and his team at Levine & Wiss has been able to collect damages from:
· Slip and fall as a result of a wet floor in a store, often as a result of an employee mopping without having put down a wet floor sign.
· Slip and fall accident as a result of wet or dirty stairs in an apartment or office building – can lead to some of the worst injuries as a result of the added stairs.
· Slip and fall due to a landlord not ignoring a leaky roof – leading to wet floors, and unnoticed wet floors.
· Slip and fall outdoors, as a result of a raised, uneven or damaged sidewalk area. Depending on the sidewalk, this may be the responsibility of the city itself, however, in most cases it is up to the owner of the property to maintain the sidewalks.
· Slip and fall as a result of ongoing construction creating some type of obstruction or temporary walkway that may be difficult to navigate.
While these are some of the most prominent slip and fall claims won by Mr. Levine, the top personal injury lawyer Queens has practicing, there are just as many cases as the LAW PLLC team has taken on that have sadly not ended in damages for the client. The important thing to understand when it comes to an NYC personal injury law claim is proving the negligence – by definition, as personal injury claim is one in which a victim or victims are injured in some way, mentally or physically, as a result of the negligence of another at-fault party. The victim can then file a lawsuit against the other party, in an effort to gain compensatory damages for actually monetary losses, as well as repayment for less concrete losses such as pain and suffering or the loss of possible future earnings. When it comes to any personal injury claim, the importance often lies in proving the negligence of the other party. In the case of a slip and fall incident here are some examples of how the burden of proof might work.
· Proving Dangerous Conditions as the Cause
The first thing that must be done in an effort to prove that there is some kind of a dangerous or defective issue that led directly to your fall. Essentially, you will need to expose some type of defect present = a raised, broken, or uneven sidewalk, a slippery floor, a missing or broken handrail, a broken step, or any other type of impediment that may have led to your fall. Its vital that you or your attorney then get some photos, videos any other documentation – identifying the dangerous and thus negligent condition that caused your fall. It’s of paramount importance that you do this immediately, before the area has been cleaned up or repaired. Whether this problem is “dangerous” or “defective” is a legal question that depends on the circumstances of your incident but identifying why you fell is the most important thing an attorney asks when evaluating a potential claim. According to the laws in NYC, your personal injury claim can go on, if you identify the incident as the reason for which you fell – so be sure to keep that in mind.
· Identifying the Party Responsible for the Damage or Dangerous Condition (Negligence)
One of the next most important aspects of being able to prove the validity of your personal injury claim is being able to clearly outline who is responsible for the issue that caused your fall. There must be one person, a group or entity that is responsible – for instance, it can be the owner of a home or store, the city of New York – in the event it takes place in a municipal building, or it can be a corporation – for instance, if it takes place within a Walmart or some other large retailer. Essentially, you must be able to clearly identify the person who at fault for ignoring or committing the action that got you hurt or injured.
· They Did It or Understood it Was Done
Once you have proved and identified the at-fault party, this next step is fairly simple, as you must simply establish the following in regard to the defendant:
a) That they created the condition that caused you to slip and fall – thus injuring yourself, as a result of their negligence.
b) That they were on “notice” for that condition occurring – or events in which this condition was possible and could cause damage or injury to others.
The concept of notice is very important in this scenario, as there generally requires that the defendant have “active” knowledge of the incident occurring at the time, and not doing something to stop it in the moment. In an instance where they may not have actively known that the floor was wet at the time, notice dictates that they can still be held at fault as a situation is created where they should have known about the problem if they kept up with their responsibility to keep things safe.
To learn more about all manners of NYC personal injury law, or to schedule a consultation, be sure to contact Levine & Wiss today.