Trip & Fall Accidents Attorney in Medina, Ohio
More than one million people are injured every year in slip, trip, and fall accidents. They don’t just happen to elderly people or workers on the job. These events happen to people of all ages any time someone responsible for maintaining a safe property fails to do so.
A trip and fall may not be the result of a lack of coordination or by not paying attention to where you were walking. It may occur because the path where you were walking at the time should have been safe, but it was not. If you were injured in the fall, it is you who pays the price.
At John Brooks Cameron & Associates, we look out for people injured due to someone else’s negligence. For many of our clients from Medina, Ohio, and from Summit, Akron, Cuyahoga, and Wooster counties, one hazard changed their lives forever. If you have suffered injuries from a trip and fall on someone else’s unsafe property, we are ready to help.
When is a Trip & Fall Accident
Not Just an Accident?
A trip and fall occurs when you are moving with sufficient momentum and your foot comes into contact with something that causes you to fall. Most people have done it before, such as ascending stairs and failing to pick up your feet high enough which causes you to catch your toe on the stair and fall forward. You may not be paying attention and you trip over a toy your child left lying in the hallway.
If your trip and fall is caused by unsafe conditions on someone else’s property, you may have a premises liability claim. That’s because private citizens, businesses, and governmental entities owe everyone else a duty of care to maintain a safe premises so people do not injure themselves.
Store owners can’t leave random items in the middle of the aisle. The sidewalk in front of city hall should be in good repair so no one trips on a piece of sidewalk that is higher than the adjacent one. Even your neighbor has a responsibility to keep their carpet secured so you don’t trip on a loose edge, fall, and injure yourself while visiting their home.
The party responsible for maintaining a safe premises may not be the property owner. For example, a business may rent its commercial space. The business owner, not the property owner, would be the liable party if you trip over an empty and unmarked end cap at the end of the aisle.
Hazards should be clearly identified with warning signs, made inaccessible by being roped or closed off, or should be remedied so an unsafe condition no longer exists. If they are not and you trip and injure yourself, you can seek to hold them financially liable for the harm you suffer.
Injuries suffered in a trip and fall accident can range from minor cuts and bruises to sprains and fractures to traumatic brain injuries. With any of them, you can incur the cost of medical treatment, lose income if you are unable to work, and endure pain and suffering. Some trip and fall accidents can be fatal, leaving loved ones to deal with grief in addition to financial damages.
What to Do After a Trip & Fall Accident
The first thing you should do if you trip and fall is seek medical attention. In some cases, injuries will be obvious and severe and warrant calling an ambulance. Trip and fall injuries can be extremely jarring, even if they are not immediately apparent. Being examined by emergency responders is a good idea.
Don’t rush to move just because you might be “blocking traffic” or because you feel embarrassed by onlookers. Moving around can be dangerous with many injuries.
If you can, take photos of the unsafe condition that caused your fall and the surrounding area. Get the names and contact information of any people who witnessed the trip and fall. Make sure the incident is reported to the manager, supervisor, safety director, or someone else with authority to draft an incident report. The company that carries the property or business owner’s liability insurance will need one.
In drafting that report, you will be asked questions regarding the circumstances of the trip and fall. Answer only the questions asked and do not volunteer additional information. If possible, respond “yes” or “no” without elaborating. Don’t be afraid to say you don’t know or aren’t sure about something. The insurance company will want to interview you later. You should wait until you have an attorney representing you before you respond.
If you choose to not be examined by emergency responders, seek medical treatment immediately upon leaving the scene for two reasons. First, you need to protect your own health by receiving any treatment you need right away. Second, to file a premises liability claim, you will need a medical diagnosis that links your injuries to the trip and fall incident.
Finally, consult with a personal injury attorney who represents injury victims like you in trip and fall claims.
How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
Trips and falls are some of the most difficult liability claims to pursue. This is primarily because the party responsible for maintaining a safe property will allege that you were wholly or partially at fault by not paying attention to where you were walking. Ohio observes comparative negligence, which can hold you partially responsible for tripping. Even if you are assigned 50% of the fault, you can still sue the other party, but any recovery you make will be reduced by your share of fault.
A personal injury attorney will investigate the circumstances of the incident, gather proof of negligence, document your damages, such as injuries, medical expenses, and lost income, and put insurance companies on notice and negotiate with them. Your attorney will also take your case before a judge and jury should you need to file a lawsuit.
Trip & Fall Accidents Attorney
Serving Medina, Ohio
If you believe the injuries you sustained in a trip and fall were the result of another party’s failure to maintain a safe premises, reach out to me. I became a personal injury attorney because I understand the challenges faced by injury victims. Do you have a tough claim? I welcome the challenge. Call me at John Brooks Cameron & Associates.