Slip-and-Fall Lawyer in Lexington, KY
The Law of Negligence
The law of premises liability applies to all slip and trip injury cases. Premises liability is controlled by the law of negligence. Owners and occupiers of real estate have a duty to maintain their property in such a manner as it is free of dangerous conditions or defects that might cause injury to others. That duty involves ensuring that the inside and outside of the property is free from defects that could cause slip-and-fall or trip-and-fall injuries. If there’s a breach of that duty, and a slip or a trip causes a fall that injures somebody, the owner or occupier of the premises can be held liable for damages.
When a person has a slip-and-fall accident, he or she is most likely to fall backward. Here are some common types of slip-and-fall injuries:
- Skull fractures and traumatic brain injuries that can result in debilitating cognitive deficits. These types of injuries are most often seen in the elderly.
- Damage to the spinal cord and spinal structure that can lead to disability, paralysis and diminished life expectancy.
- Dislocations and fractures that can require surgery and result in permanent partial disability.
The body mechanics of a trip-and-fall are usually the opposite of a slip-and-fall. Trip-and-fall victims usually fall forward. In these types of falls, sidewalk or flooring surfaces are usually uneven or offset. Potholes in parking lots are commonly associated with trip-and-fall accidents and injuries. Hoses, cables and loose storm sewer covers are known to cause them too. Inadequate lighting can also contribute to trip-and-fall injuries. A person is instinctively going to put their hands out to break a fall in a trip-and-fall accident. That’s why shoulder injuries are so common in these types of falls. Along with brain and spinal cord injuries, facial and dental fractures are not uncommon in trip-and-falls.
The Burden of Proof
The person who slipped or tripped as a result of a dangerous condition on a premises has the burden of proving their case by a preponderance of the evidence. That burden means that his or her case is more likely true than not true. Here’s what complicates liability issues in the event of a trip rather than a slip?
Temporary Conditions vs. Permanent Conditions
If a person is injured in a slip-and-fall on property owned or occupied by somebody else, it’s likely that the condition that caused the person to slip will be mopped or cleaned up before we can get there. In a trip-and-fall, we can often assess a condition like damaged flooring, a hole or uneven or sunken pavement before remedial measures are taken. Kentucky law in connection with injuries resulting from slipping on wet surfaces is more favorable to victims than the law in other states. That’s another reason why you’ll want to talk to us as soon as possible after being injured in a slip-and-fall accident.
It’s nearly certain that the owner or occupier of the premises where you fell will allege that you weren’t paying attention to where you were going and failed to use due care and caution for your own personal safety. That’s known as the law of comparative negligence. For example, a jury might determine that you were 20 percent at fault for your accident. That doesn’t bar you from your recovery. You’ll still be awarded 80 percent of the gross verdict.
The Statute of Limitations
Kentucky only allows an injury victim one year from the date of the injury to bring his or her personal injury lawsuit. Failure to file that lawsuit within the one year period is cause for dismissal. You can be forever barred from seeking compensation for your injuries. This is a harsh rule, and there are very few exceptions to it. You’ll want to visit with us sooner rather than later.
Lexington Kentucky Slip and Fall Lawyer
After a slip-and-fall or trip-and fall, report your injury to management, seek immediate medical attention and then call your Lexington Personal Injury Lawyer to arrange for a free case consultation and case evaluation. We’ll listen to you attentively, answer your questions and advise you of your full range of legal options. If we’re retained to represent you, no legal fees are due unless we obtain a settlement or verdict for you. Contact us right away after being injured in any slip-and-fall or trip-and fall accident.