When you enter a commercial establishment, you are most likely there to conduct business. You may be shopping, purchasing gasoline, going out to dinner, or conducting day-to-day transactions. When you enter these establishments, you do so with your mindset on that business. You are not thinking about falling and getting injured.
Slip and fall accidents do happen. Insurance companies like to blame individuals for the accident, saying that the person was distracted by the business they were conducting and fell for that reason. However, most slip and fall events are because the property owner acted negligently.
To file a claim for slip and fall Florida injury victims must meet the four requirements for a negligence case.
Slip and Fall Cases In Florida – Requirements
There are four requirements to prove a slip and fall negligence case. Anyone who is seeking compensation for an injury from a slip and fall event must show:
1. Duty of Care
The injury victim must show that the property owner had a Duty of Care to them to prevent the fall from occurring. This is a very easy item to prove. If the business was open to the public, the property owner and management have a responsibility to the public to keep the place safe for use.
2. Breach of Duty
The next step to proving negligence is that you must show an action that occurred was not what an ordinary person would do under the same circumstances. For instance, if you fell down some stairs because the handrail was loose, you would show that a normal property owner or management would have fixed the loose handrail so no one would get hurt.
However, the Florida slip and fall statute takes this point one step further. Florida Statute § 768.0755 states that not only must you prove that there was a breach, but you must also show that the owner or manager of the property knew about that problem and did nothing to correct the issue.
This is where it can become a little more difficult to prove the case. However, an experienced slip and fall attorney can conduct the necessary investigation so that it can be shown that the owner knew or should have known of this condition and did nothing to make corrections.
3. Breach Led To Injury
The next step will be to show that the accident caused you a physical injury. This is why it is very important to file an accident report and request a medical evaluation after any slip and fall event. The information contained in those two reports will establish this fact.
4. The Injury Caused Financial Losses
This is the easiest step to prove. If there are medical bills, missed time at work, or any other expense related to the accident and injury, your attorney can show that financial harm occurred.
Slip and Fall Statute of Limitations Florida
The only other important law that you must consider when filing a compensation claim for a slip and fall event is the Statute of Limitations. The Statute of Limitations is a set of laws that applies to all legal cases.
These laws limit the amount of time you have to seek damages for a claim. The purpose of restricting the time is to protect all of the parties involved in the case.
Over time, evidence is misplaced, memories get foggy, witnesses move or die, and it is impossible for either side of the issue to get a fair trial. So the court limits the amount of time between when an event occurred and when they can file a claim.
In Florida, the Statute of Limitations states that you have four years from the date of the accident to file a compensation claim.
You are encouraged, however, to speak with an attorney much sooner than that. Slip and fall cases can be very complex, and many times the evidence is quickly lost because repairs are made to the area that caused the accident. Businesses can also change ownership or close down if they do not act quickly.
Contacting an attorney right away after a slip and fall injury will protect your rights and help your attorney establish a solid claim for compensation for your slip and fall injuries.
Contact the personal injury attorneys at Landau Law today for a free consultation.