Every slip and fall differs, so we cannot determine what damages you can seek after a slip and fall without speaking with you first. The damages you can go after will depend on the circumstances of your situation and multiple factors.
Damages After a Slip and Fall Accident
One of the reasons that there is no "one-size-fits-all" approach to compensation for slip and fall accidents is that every person's injuries are unique. One person's injuries will be more severe than someone else’s. Some people heal quicker than others. You might have permanent problems as a result of the fall injury. The damages you can recover will depend on the facts of your case.
Here are some of the kinds of damages we have won for our slip and fall clients:
- Lost wages, to replace what you missed because of the fall and recuperation time. This category can include salary, wages, self-employment, and other forms of income.
- Diminished earning potential, if your injuries leave you unable to make as much money as you could before the fall.
- Disability, if you can no longer work to support yourself because of your injuries.
- Medical expenses, including things like the ambulance, emergency room, surgery, x-rays, diagnostic procedures, hospital, doctors, prescription drugs, and physical therapy.
- Rehabilitation facility, if you needed extended treatment in a specialized care facility because of a catastrophic injury.
- Long-term care, if you need daily assistance with medical treatments and personal care because of devastating injuries from the slip and fall.
- Pain and suffering
- Intangible damages, like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression and anxiety, disfigurement, loss of enjoyment of life, and a spousal claim for loss of consortium.
- Wrongful death, if a slip and fall accident took the life of your close loved one.
Elements of Liability for Slip and Fall Injury Claims
Property owners do not have to prevent every possible slip and fall injury on their premises. Georgia law will impose liability on the owner if we can prove all three of these factors:
- A dangerous condition existed on the property. By way of example, a fast food restaurant required customers to get their beverages from self-serve soft drink machines. The store did not provide mats on the floor to absorb spills. As a result, the floor around the soda machines was slippery most of the time.
- The owner knew or should have known the hazard existed. The employees observed the puddles of liquid on the floor and reported the situation to the manager.
- The owner did not correct the dangerous condition or post adequate warnings to prevent injuries. The manager could have placed nonskid absorbent mats on the floor to soak up the spills and prevent people from falling. Also, the manager could have posted warning signs and cones to block off the area. The manager did not take any of these steps.
If someone slips and falls because of the dangerous condition on the property, the owner will be liable for the damages.
How an Injury Lawyer Can Help with Your Slip and Fall Injury Case
Georgia law does not require you to work with a slip and fall lawyer on your damages claim, but it can be a good idea to do so. The landowner’s insurance company likely has teams of lawyers, adjusters, investigators, and other professionals who work full-time with one goal in mind, to pay as little as possible for injury claims. It can be intimidating to try to battle all of these people on your own. Here are some of the pitfalls people can encounter when they try to handle their own slip and fall injury cases:
- High-pressure tactics. The insurance company should not contact you directly when you have a lawyer on the case. If an adjuster or anyone else at the insurance company calls you, you can tell them to talk to your lawyer. We have your back. We will deal with the insurance company so that you do not have to.
- Recorded statements. The insurance adjuster will likely ask you for a recorded statement. These statements do not benefit you or increase the amount of compensation you will get. In fact, recorded statements often decrease the amount of your money damages. The adjuster can twist your words and take them out of context to pay you less money than you deserve. Again, tell the adjuster to talk to your lawyer.
- Deadlines to file a lawsuit. Like every state, Georgia limits the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit to get compensation for your injuries. If you overstep the deadline, you will not be able to go after compensation for your losses.
- Settling too early. You should not settle your slip and fall injury case until you have completed all of your medical treatment and healed completely. If you settle before that point, you might later discover that you have permanent loss of function or need additional procedures, like surgery. Once you accept that settlement check, you can never go back to the insurance company for more money.
You can call S. Burke Law today at 404-842-7838 for a free consultation. When you let a premises liability lawyer take care of your injury claim, you can devote your energy to your health and well-being.