Winter comes with its fair share of hazards for motorists and pedestrians alike. There’s 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 likely. They’re the leading cause of brain injury in the United States. If you’ve been injured after slipping and falling on ice, you might be wondering: can you sue the property owner?
All About 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. Chief among these is that the property owner violated duty of care.
You may have heard the term ‘duty of care’ before. Its definition is exactly what you’d 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, 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.
Can You Sue?
Like 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 ought to pay the price.
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.
Call 410-THE-FIRM. Don’t just sue them. SNYDER THEM.