Winter comes with its fair share of hazards for motorists and pedestrians alike. There is a lot of talk about perilous icy conditions on the roads that drivers should be aware of, but not so much about how it can be a danger for pedestrians on the sidewalk.
Slip and fall accidents should not be taken lightly. They are the leading cause of brain injury in the United States. If you have been injured after slipping and falling on ice, you might be wondering: can you sue the property owner?
If you have been injured after slipping on ice, you might be able to sue the property owner.
Injuries Sustained When Victims Slip and Fall on Ice
While the type of injury your physician diagnoses you with will not determine whether you have grounds for a lawsuit, there are certain types of injuries slip and fall accident lawyers see more often than others during the winter months.
Some of the most common types of ice accident injuries our team handles include:
- Back injuries
- Herniated or slipped discs
- Broken bones or compound fractures
- Facial trauma
- Dental injuries
- Penetrating brain injuries
- Puncture wounds
- Organ failure
- Internal bleeding
- Lacerations that cause septic shock
- Neck injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Hand and wrist injuries
If you are dealing with another type of injury that was not included in the list above, you may still have the right to take legal action. Anytime you slip and fall on ice, if someone else’s negligence is the cause of your fall or resulting injuries, you may have the legal right to compensation for your losses. Do not hesitate to contact a slip and fall attorney to explore your legal options further.
Can You Sue for Falling on Ice?
As we mentioned earlier, a few conditions need to be met for you to sue after slipping and falling on ice. Let’s go over a few of those now.
You were verifiably injured. There must be some sort of proof that you were injured after slipping and falling on ice. This could include anything from photographs to eyewitness reports to verification by your doctor.
The property owner failed to remove the snow and ice. Next, the circumstances need to be such that any reasonable property owner would have been aware of the hazardous conditions and should have taken some reasonable steps to eliminate them. In the case of snow and ice, this typically equates to salting and shoveling.
The negligence of the property owner resulted in your injuries. Your injuries need to be traceable to the property owner’s negligence. If, for instance, you were intoxicated or disorderly at the time of your injury, there may not be sufficient grounds for a lawsuit.
Here at The Snyder Law Group, we take slip and fall accidents seriously. Property owners have a duty to keep their premises safe for visitors. When they fail to do so, they should be expected to pay the price.
The Property Owner’s Duty of Care
To cut right to the chase: yes, you may be able to sue the property owner after you’ve slipped and fallen on ice. But certain conditions need to be met. Among these is that the property owner violated the duty of care.
You may have heard the term ‘duty of care’ before. Its definition is exactly what you would expect; the term refers to the responsibility of property owners to keep their premises safe for visitors. The most familiar example of this principle in practice is placing yellow caution signs on a potentially wet or slippery floor. By the same token, property owners ought to ensure that visitors to their premises do not slip and injure themselves on ice.
Duty of care is an obligation on just about any sort of property you can imagine. Not only do owners of businesses and municipal buildings such as libraries have to keep their premises safe, but homeowners do, too. If you have visitors to your home this weekend, be sure to ice and shovel your walkway.
There is one noteworthy exception we have to discuss, however. Duty of care generally does not apply when the injured is unlawfully on the premises, such as when trespassing.
How to Access the Compensation You Deserve For an Ice Accident Injury
There are multiple ways you may be able to demand total financial compensation after slipping and falling on ice. First, you may have the opportunity to file a claim with the liable party’s insurance company. For example, if you slipped and fell on ice outside of your favorite coffee shop, you might file a claim with the coffee shop’s general liability insurance provider. Conversely, if you slipped and fell on ice at a residential property, you might file a homeowner’s insurance or renters insurance claim.
If the liable party does not have enough insurance coverage to fully compensate you for your damages, or they do not have any insurance coverage at all, you may need to move forward with a slip and fall lawsuit. Bringing your case to trial may seem overwhelming during this challenging time in your life, but civil court is often the best way to recover maximum compensation for your damages without having to face the restrictions insurance claimants deal with.
Common Types of Damages to Sue For After Falling on Ice
When another party’s negligence is the cause of your slip and falls on ice, you should not be stuck covering the costs. Whether you file a claim with the insurance company or bring your case to trial, or a combination of both, you are entitled to compensation for every loss. Examples of economic and non-economic damages that may be recovered include:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Medical bills
- Loss of income
- Permanent disability
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of household services
- Disfigurement or skin scarring
- Loss of consortium
Contact The Snyder Law Group Today
The Snyder Law Group, LLC, proudly represents clients throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C. Our experienced Baltimore attorneys understand the frustration that comes with an insurance company, medical professional, or other party that refuses to accept liability for negligent or reckless behavior.
You can take heart in knowing there are talented and experienced lawyers ready to work for you. We are experienced in handling personal injury claims of medical malpractice or injury resulting from serious car and truck accidents and have secured hundreds of millions in verdicts and settlements. Please visit our website, www.410thefirm.com, for more information and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.