Jackson, MS Slip & Fall Accident Attorneys
We Have the Premises Liability Experience You Need
Slip or trip and fall incidents fall under the category of premises liability lawsuits. This simply means that you were injured on someone else’s property and that the owner or another party could be liable for medical bills and other damages.
Premises liability cases can be difficult to win and should be handled by an attorney with experience litigating cases and taking on big businesses. At ‘Maggio | Thompson, LLP we are willing and able to take on these challenging cases to represent our clients’ best interests. It is our promise to work tirelessly and efficiently with one goal in mind: maximizing any recovery to which you may be entitled.
Call (601) 265-6869 to discuss your case. We serve Jackson and all of Mississippi.
Property Owner Negligence & Liability in Mississippi
Property owners and businesses have a duty to maintain safe property grounds for customers, pedestrians, and other visitors and adequately warn them of possible dangers. If a property or business owner is told of a potential hazard such as a loose handrail, a hole in the pavement, or standing water, a leaking display case, a roof leak, or other potential danger, they are responsible for fixing the problem before someone gets hurt. As with most legal claims, negligence must be proven for a successful recovery to be obtained.
Examples of property owner negligence include:
- Spills that cause slip and fall accidents in stores
- Steps that are uneven or missing handrails
- Inadequate lighting
- Misplaced items in high-traffic areas
- Cracks or holes in sidewalks
- Failures to provide handicapped access
- Leaking display shelves in grocery stores
Key Elements of a Slip & Fall Accident Claim
A premises liability claim must be proven by the plaintiff (the injured party). As Jackson slip and fall lawyers, we work with experts and investigators to determine and establish what caused the incident and why the property owner should be held responsible.
To win, we must prove three critical issues:
- The condition on the premises was dangerous
- The property owner knew, or should have known, of the dangerous condition
- The property owner failed to remedy and/or warn you of the dangerous condition
Property owners often make quick cleanups or repairs following accidents. For this reason, it is important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible. We offer a free initial consultation to help you understand your options, and if we take on your case, you don’t have to worry about upfront costs or any attorney fees at all unless we win.
What to Do After a Slip & Fall Accident
If you slip, trip, or fall, there are three main things you should remember:
- Always take detailed pictures of the scene
- Never give a recorded statement
- Always write down names and contact information for witnesses
While these are often critical issues to remember, you should also save footwear and clothing that you were wearing at the time of the fall. You should document every detail and seek representation immediately. Details may be forgotten, and the scene may be repaired. Acting fast can protect your right to full, fair compensation.
Document These Critical Details
The following is a list of some things that you will have to write down, notate or capture if you ever get into a slip-and-fall situation.
1. Time and Date of the Incident
The first thing you need to write down and document is the time and date of the incident. Those are two crucial pieces of the puzzle that your attorney will need to have. You need to be as precise as possible so that there will not be any discrepancies.
2. Your Recollection of the Incident
It’s a good idea for you to write down your own recollection of the incident. Facts and information can change in your memory as time passes, and your court date may not be for a while. Thus, you should write an immediate account of everything that happened that day while it’s fresh. It will be invaluable.
3. Witness Contact Information
A witness can be so important to your case and getting restitution for what happened to you that you have to get that person’s information. Write down that person’s name and contact number so that your attorney can talk to her about what she saw. She may just be the person who causes the judge to rule in your favor.
4. Property Conditions
Jot down all the property conditions that you can remember were apparent before you fell down and hurt yourself. You should write down even the information that you don’t believe is relevant because it may just be something that the attorney needs to use in the negotiations. You will need to notate if you noticed any dangerous situations. You’ll need to write down if any parts of the building looked corroded or sturdy. Take note of what the floor looked like before you fell on it. All of that information can help your lawyer to fend for you and perhaps get the other party to settle out of court. Even if the other party doesn’t settle out of court, the information will help your case.
5. Clothing Details
You will need to write down some details about the clothing you were wearing when the incident occurred. The reasons for that is that the other party could argue that the slip and the fall were your fault if you don’t protect yourself by keeping note of your clothing. That party could try to say that you were wearing shoes that were not suitable for the floor. Of course, that accusation may not hold water, but it’s still best for you to prepare yourself for if you have to stand in front of a judge.
When to See a Doctor After a Slip & Fall
One of the first things you should do after a slip, trip, or fall on someone else’s property is to seek medical attention immediately. Not only are you likely in need of medical services, but seeing a doctor is an essential element of any case. You must have a medical professional document the injuries you sustained, thereby creating an expert-level record that will be useful in determining fault as well as the timing of the injury.
If you fail to see a doctor promptly, there is a chance your case may be dismissed as the defense may claim that your injury occurred at a different time or location. Having a medical record of your injury is an important step in our strategy to defend you and make sure you receive the compensation to which you’re entitled.
You Have a Limited Window to Take Action
A vital element to slip and fall cases is the timeliness of reporting and filing a claim. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may have alerted a property owner or proprietor to the fact that you’ve sustained an injury. However, once you do, be careful what you say and do not admit fault. Once the extent of your injuries is documented by a medical professional, as stated above, it is wise to file an official report with the help of an attorney.
Each state is different, and in Mississippi, the statute of limitations is three years. Your claim must be filed within that window to have any case at all. Otherwise, your case could be dismissed entirely by a court, and you will walk away empty-handed.
How Much Is Your Slip and Fall Case Worth?
If you slipped or tripped and fell on someone else’s property, you have a steep road ahead of you. Slip and fall cases can be incredibly challenging to win, and they often rely on the expertise of experienced attorneys as well as collected evidence and witnesses at the scene when the accident occurred. That said, several variables will help you determine precisely how much your case is worth.
While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to these types of cases, there are certain elements that will help you determine the value of your case. These include present and future medical bills; pain and suffering; lost wages or loss of earning capacity; and even some incidental expenses, such as mileage or gas to get back and forth from treatment.
1. Present and future medical bills
If you sought treatment soon after the fall, you’ve already taken a step in the right direction of determining how much your case is worth. Attorneys, insurance adjusters, and other parties will use medical treatment as a way to measure exactly how much to pay you for your claim. This is the starting point in making sure you receive the correct and appropriate sum of money to compensate you for your injuries.
This includes medical treatment you are currently going through, as well as any future treatment, physical therapy, or anything similar you anticipate needing in the future. A good rule of thumb is to keep copies of all medical bills and paperwork from your doctor and health insurance company. This will be an easy and effective way to calculate the cost of your slip and fall case.
2. Pain and suffering
Just because you are injured on someone else’s property doesn’t mean the other party is automatically liable to pay for your injuries or pain and suffering related to the incident. However, by proving negligence on the part of the property owner, not only can medical bills be compensated, but you may also recover payment for pain and suffering, depending on the severity of the injury.
If your injury, for example, will cause you to walk with a limp for the rest of your life, you may be compensated several times over what your medical bills list as expenses. If you recover quickly, however, pain and suffering isn’t as easily recovered. Recouping pain and suffering isn’t always a guarantee and can be particularly challenging. That’s why it’s helpful to have an attorney on your side who is experienced in handling these types of cases.
3. Lost wages or loss of earning capacity
If you missed work because of the incident, whether you were recovering, going through physical therapy or simply unable to move, you may be eligible to receive compensation due to wages lost or because you are no longer able to earn a comparable living at your occupation after the incident. This is quite common and one of the things that require due diligence on your part.
Much of the lost wages and employment information will need to be verified by your employer. In some cases, a vocational or occupational therapist may need to determine exactly how much of your earnings were lost due to the accident and whether or not you can reasonably return to doing the kinds of work you were doing prior to the accident.
No matter if you slipped on concrete stairs outside of a busy, downtown office building or suffered a fall at the hands of faulty railing at a construction site, it’s important to remember that each case is different. And we want to help you make sense of your claims so that you can get everything you are entitled to.
Before you determine whether or not filing a slip and fall claim is the right move for you, contact one of our experienced premises liability attorneys today.
Contact ‘Maggio | Thompson, LLP today for your free, private consultation.