According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 1,000,000 people every year visit the emergency room due to a slip and fall accident. Over 800,000 patients a year are hospitalized because of a fall injury, most often a head injury or hip fracture.
At Weiner, Spivey & Miller, our legal team has over 190 years of combined experience in aggressively advocating for people injured due to someone else’s negligence. If you have been injured in a fall, you could be protected by premises liability laws. Whether the property owner is a business, landlord, or neighbor, you may be entitled to file a premises liability claim against them to hold them liable for your injuries, medical bills, and lost wages.
Not every slip and fall results in an insurance claim or a legal case. Several factors are important. First, it must be the negligence of a third party, a property owner, a store owner or a snow removal contractor, for example. In other words, someone must have done something wrong that was the proximate cause of the fall. Second, the person who fell must not have been at fault. Virginia is a contributory negligence state, so if the injured person is at fault or even partly at fault, he or she cannot recover any damages. Another important factor is the “open and obvious” test. If whatever caused the fall was clearly visible and the injured person could have or should have seen it, then that person is partly at fault and cannot recover.
Woman Stepped on Unsecured Water Meter Cover:
Jean was an event planner, specializing in the organization of large festivals. While walking her dog before work one morning, she stepped on a small water meter access cover in the grass median near the curb. The metal cover was not properly secured. It flipped to the side, causing Jean's foot to fall through and hit the pipes below. The bones of her four smaller toes were broken off from the connecting bones of her mid-foot. Jean underwent surgery to re-attach her 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th metatarsal bones, followed by extensive physical therapy. She had ongoing, permanent pain after the accident and could no longer stand for extended periods of time. The local water company initially denied the claim. Ed Weiner and Lawson Spivey negotiated a settlement of $205,000 for Jean.
Customer Falls Due to Lack of Handrail:
Angela, age 73, slipped on a wet step outside of a clothing store in the parking lot of a local strip shopping center. In violation of building codes, the step did not have a handrail. Angela fell hard, fracturing her kneecap and shoulder. Ed Weiner and Mike Brown negotiated a confidential settlement from the property ownership company on Angela's behalf.
Home Owners Association Responsible for Fall on Icy, Untreated Parking Lot:
It had snowed in Gail's neighborhood. While her community's parking lot had been plowed, the snow was left in piles around the community mailboxes. Neither salt or sand was spread on the exposed pavement. The next morning, when Gayle was going back inside after getting her mail, she slipped and fell on black ice, fracturing her right wrist. Gayle had surgery 5 days later, followed by physical therapy. She missed significant amounts of time from her job as a court reporter. Lawson Spivey negotiated a settlement of $90,000 for Gail from the Home Owners Association.
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