Whether you’re out and about running errands or you’re visiting a new location—residential or otherwise, you never expect to leave injured. Unfortunately, falls are one of the most common accidents resulting in trips to the emergency room. If you’ve been injured on someone’s property, a Cincinnati slip and fall lawyer from Thomas Law Offices can help.
Slip and fall injuries have the potential to upend your life completely. Instead of trying to manage your legal affairs on your own while healing, working with a reputable attorney will give you the opportunity to focus on your physical injuries and having them treated. Your lawyer will look into your situation and determine if there are grounds for a personal injury claim.
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Where Slip and Fall Accidents Happen
Even when you are cautious and aware of your surroundings, there’s still the possibility that you could slip or trip and fall. When an accident like that happens because of a hazard that could or should have been prevented or fixed, it’s possible you could hold the property owner accountable for your injuries and other related losses. In order to determine liability, you’ll first what to consider where your fall happened.
Indoor Slip and Falls
If you’re inside someone’s home and fall, it’s likely because of torn carpet, inadequate lighting, loose floorboards, or liquid spills that either have not been cleaned up or were not adequately removed. Wet surfaces, in particular, can cause serious injuries—especially to the back and spinal column if a person slips and falls backward.
For a premises to be adequately maintained, the owner needs to regularly clean and inspect floors, ensure all carpets are tacked down properly, check staircases for loose boards, and have ample lighting in areas that are darker. In the event a property owner has someone over to their home or place of business and they know there is a potential hazard, they need to inform the visitor so an accident can be avoided.
Outdoor Slip and Falls
The outside of properties need to be maintained just as well as the inside. Sidewalks, driveways, and curbs can all pose dangers when they are cracked or in a state of disrepair. This is especially true in the winter months when snow can hide lift sidewalks and pavement cracks. Ice is also an issue in the wintertime, which is something a property owner needs to treat for.
To properly maintain the outside of a property, the owner needs to regularly check walkways for hazards, inform visitors of potential issues, and fix any problems as quickly as possible.
If you trip and fall in a store, it’s possible the store owner or building owner could be held responsible for your injuries. Slip and falls often happen in grocery stores and shopping malls. If a liquid spill isn’t cleaned up or maintenance isn’t on top of cleaning the floors when it’s raining or snowing, a patron could fall and get seriously injured. Injuries can also happen on escalators and in elevators when those machines aren’t taken care of.
Common Slip and Fall Injuries
While anyone is at risk of a fall, more than one out of four older people falls each year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), unintentional falls are the leading cause of accidental death in the United States. Nearly 20% of those accidents cause serious injuries like broken bones or head trauma. Ranging from minor to severe, some of the most common injuries after a fall include:
- Cuts and Abrasions
- Sprained Wrists or Ankles
- Soft Tissue Injuries
- Neck Injuries
- Fractured Limbs or Hips
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
After a slip and fall accident, it’s imperative to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Even if you aren’t experiencing any pain or see any visible injuries, you could have internal damage. When you arrive at the hospital, it’s likely you’ll undergo imaging tests like X-rays or CAT scans. Once you have an official diagnosis, you’ll be able to gauge what your recovery will be like.
Types of Property Visitors in Ohio
If you slip and fall on someone’s property in Cincinnati, your ability to recover damages for your injuries will be determined by the premises liability laws in Ohio. In Ohio, visitors to a property are classified into three categories: invitee, licensee, and trespasser. The category you fall into will affect your recovery eligibility.
An invitee is someone who is legally allowed to be on someone else’s property. For example, a shopper would be considered an invitee at a supermarket. A licensee is someone who enters someone else’s property for their own benefit. A friend who shows up at your house unannounced would be considered a licensee. A trespasser is someone who enters a property without the authorization of the property owner.
If you are an invitee and you’re injured because the property owner failed to address a dangerous condition, you will likely be entitled to recovery. The rights of a licensee and trespasser are different, and there are a number of situations that could alter the ability to seek compensation for your losses. In order to understand your rights and legal options, it’s best to get in touch with a Cincinnati attorney.
Seek Help From Thomas Law Offices in Cincinnati
Even minor injuries from a slip and fall can prevent you from working for a period of time. In the event you sustained more severe injuries, you could be looking at significant time at home and substantial medical bills. When someone else’s actions or inactions contributed to your accident, a Cincinnati slip and fall lawyer from Thomas Law Offices can help.
At Thomas Law Offices, we pride ourselves on helping residents in and around Cincinnati. We understand that it only takes mere seconds for your life to change, and we want to help you get your affairs back in order as quickly as possible.
The sooner you get in touch with us after an accident, the better your chances are of making a full financial recovery. To learn more about filing a claim, schedule a free consultation with our law firm today.