Hazardous property conditions can result in slips and falls. A slip and fall accident may not strike you as a serious type of accident, but incidents exists where people have fallen, hit their heads and died from concussions in slip and fall accidents. Elderly people in particular often suffer serious injuries from broken hips, backs and other broken bones in slip and fall accidents.
Under NY law, what is considered a slip and fall accident?
Slip and fall cases arise when a dangerous condition in a walking surface causes a person to slip and fall. Examples of dangerous surfaces are surfaces where there is water, ice, oil, soap, holes, cracks, torn carpet or other defects. The surface can be outdoors or indoors.
What Makes Another Party Liable in a Slip and Fall Case?
The property owner must have been negligent about handling the dangerous condition in order for grounds to exist to pursue a slip-and-fall case. In other words, the property owner should have known about the hazardous condition and then failed to repair, clean, wipe up or rope off the area or warn about the danger.
What Are Some Examples of Slip and Fall Cases?
The New York Bar Association provides the following examples of slip and fall cases where property owners may have failed to adequately deal with a dangerous property condition:
- A retail store has water on the floor, and the owner either knows or should know about it and fails to clean up the water. Someone walks on the water, slips and falls and suffers injury.
- Bananas fall onto the floor in a grocery store. Customers walk on the bananas and smash them, which leaves an undetectable slippery spot on the floor. Store employees who have the job of ensuring aisles have no spills have not done their job. A customer falls and suffers injury.
- A janitor has mopped the floors in an office building and fails to post a warning sign or rope off the wet area. Someone falls and suffers injury.
- People walk on a municipal walkway that has been cleared after a snowstorm. However, the surface is icy in certain areas because a poor job was done when clearing the walkway. A pedestrian slips and falls and suffers injury.
In every case listed above, when property owners do not know or could not have known about the dangerous condition, negligence may not exist, and there would be no grounds for a case.
What Should You Do in a Slip and Fall Accident?
- If you slip, trip and fall on someone else’s property, you should:
- Notify the property owner as soon as possible.
- Get medical attention and document your injury.
- Contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible because you have a limited amount of time to sue for damages.
Our attorneys at Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP have extensive experience representing clients in slip and fall accidents.