When can you sue the property owner?
Slip and fall accidents on ice and snow can result in minor injuries like sprains and bruises. They can also result in serious injuries, such as broken bones and traumatic brain injuries.
As ice and snow arrives in New York, more people are prone to experiencing slip and fall accidents. In particular, the elderly is at greater risk for severe injuries.
Not All Slip and Fall Accidents Are the Same
A victim’s age, property conditions, the extent of injury and whether the property owner was negligent, make slip and fall accidents vary. Some accidents are subject to legal action while others are not.
To sue a property owner for a slip and fall accident, your attorney must prove the following:
- A dangerous condition existed on the property (for example, ice and snow not adequately cleared).
- The property owner knew about the condition and failed to remedy it.
- There was ample time to correct the condition.
- No warning signs, nor any attempt to warn people occurred.
The New York Bar Association gives an example of a potential slip and fall case in an article.
The example uses a municipal walkway after a snowstorm where the walkway has no warning posted about being icy. In addition, the walkway appears to have been cleared. A pedestrian decides it must be safe but steps on a patch of ice, falls and is seriously injured.
Due to the fact that the municipality made the effort to clean the surface but did a poor job, it may be liable.
As an aside, the laws in NY for filing a claim against a municipality are different than against a property owner. Your attorney must first file a notice of claim within 90 days of the accident.
When to Consult with a Lawyer
If you experienced a serious injury or have lost a loved one as a result of a slip and fall accident, you should speak with a lawyer as soon as possible. Our attorneys at Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP can arrange a free consultation to discuss your accident.