Watch Video: Who Pays My Medical Bills if I’m Injured in a Slip & Fall Accident?
For more than forty years, the slip and fall attorneys at Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman have represented injured parties against property or business owners whose negligence caused those injuries. We have pursued damages and other remedies in New York and New Jersey, where property or business owners, for example, did not replace missing hand rails, failed to fix broken or uneven steps, provided inadequate lighting on pathways, or did not clear the debris, ice, grease, and other hazards that caused someone to slip and suffer injuries from a fall.
Lawsuits may be filed for slip and fall injuries occurring in a variety of circumstances:
We strive to recover the maximum financial compensation that will pay for the medical treatments and therapies that our clients deserve after they have suffered a slip and fall injury.
The National Floor Safety Institute, a flooring industry trade association that is dedicated to reducing injuries from slips, trips, and falls, estimates that accidental falls send more than 8 million Americans to emergency rooms for medical treatment every year. Many of those injuries could have been prevented if property or business owners had corrected the unsafe conditions in a timely manner.
What Should I Do After a Slip and Fall Injury in New York or New Jersey?
When you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, your primary concern should always be to get the medical treatment you need to help you recover from those injuries. If you or your companions have the opportunity to do so, you should also try to write down as much information about the accident as you can gather or remember. Many slip and fall lawsuits are resolved through settlements between you and a property or business owner’s insurance company. Property or business owners and insurers will try to reduce the damages they offer to pay by arguing, among other things, that:
- You should have seen or otherwise been aware of the dangerous condition that caused your slip and fall accident;
- The owner had taken steps to protect you by placing barriers around the unsafe condition;
- You were using your phone and your injury was a result of your distraction;
- You went into an area of the property that you were not allowed to be in;
- You were wearing the wrong kind of shoes for the conditions at the time of the accident.
These and other arguments can reduce your damages recovery in any lawsuits that you file after your slip and fall accident. If you make a record of the detailed facts surrounding the accident soon after you have experienced an injury, you will have a better chance of rebutting an owner’s and an insurer’s arguments against you.
Answers to Common Slip, Trip, and Fall Questions
Do New York or New Jersey place any limitations on filing lawsuits for slip and fall accidents?
Both states impose a deadline under a statute of limitations for filing lawsuits to recover damages from slip and fall negligence accidents. If you are working with an attorney, he or she will advise you on the correct deadline that applies for filing your case. Generally, you have two years from the date of the incident in New Jersey, and three years in New York to file your lawsuit. Your best course of action is to file the lawsuit as soon as you can to avoid missing this deadline.
What if I am partly to blame for the slip and fall accident?
You can still recover damages, but your own fault can reduce the damages you recover. In New York, your damages can be reduced in proportion to your percentage of blame for your injuries, regardless of how great that percentage is. In New Jersey, if you are more than 50% to blame, you will recover no damages. For example, if you incurred $40,000 in medical expenses from a slip and fall accident on ice, and a New Jersey court determines that the high heels on your shoes were 75% of the cause of your fall, you would not recover any damages from the property owner or the insurers because you were more than 50% responsible for the accident. Alternately, under New York law, a court would reduce your damages by 75%, and instead of eliminating your damages altogether would award you $10,000 in reflection of the fact that the negligent party was 25% responsible for your injuries.
How do courts determine liability when several parties might be liable in slip and fall accidents?
In both New York and New Jersey, a property owner is responsible to keep the premises safe. The visitor must also use the property normally, and any actions by a visitor that suggest unsafe uses will likely reduce any damages that can be recovered. Businesses can be liable for slip and fall accidents at a business location even if they only lease the premises and are not the direct property owner. Further, a party that creates the dangerous condition at a location might be liable for accidents caused by that condition. An injured party’s attorney will typically analyze the potentially liable parties and will proceed with a lawsuit based on that analysis.
What are some typical examples of slip and fall accidents?
Slip and fall accidents and jury awards can take a number of different forms. In a recent case from Alabama, for example, a shopper whose foot got caught under a pallet at a Wal-Mart store received a 7-figure damages award after he broke a hip and had other injuries when he fell. This case is on the more extreme end of slip and fall accident reports. Other fact patterns in slip and fall cases include injured parties who slid when they stepped on spilled drinks that had not been mopped up, or who had fallen on stairs that were in a state of disrepair.
Contact the NY & NJ Slip and Fall Attorneys at KGG
If you have fallen and suffered injuries as a result of another party’s negligence in Bergen County, Rockland County or elsewhere in New York or New Jersey, rather than accepting a first offer from the insurance company, contact the slip and fall lawyers at Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman to review your case. We will come to your location and provide a complimentary assessment of the facts.
If we take your case, we will fight for a larger settlement or verdict. You will pay nothing unless we recover damages for you.
Additional “Slip, Trip and Fall Lawsuit” Resources:
- NFSI.org: Trips, Slips, & Falls: New National Standards Certain to be Game Changer, https://nfsi.org/trips-slips-falls-new-national-standards-certain-to-be-a-game-changer/
- Justia, Rowe v. Mazel Thirty, LLC, https://law.justia.com/cases/new-jersey/supreme-court/2012/a-95-10.html
- Reliable Plant, 6 guidelines to prevent workplace slips, trips and falls, http://www.reliableplant.com/Read/27549/Prevent-slips-trips-falls