Slip and Fall Lawyers Serving Santa Barbara
Most individuals do not expect to find themselves injured in a slip and fall accident. Unfortunately, falls cause severe injuries more often than you might think. The National Floor Safety Institute reports that falls account for more than 8 million emergency room visits annually. As you might guess, an emergency room visit for a fall injury can cost you thousands of medical expenses. If another party’s negligence caused your fall, they might be liable for your losses.
A Santa Barbara slip and fall attorney at Frederick Law Firm can review the details of your case and help determine if you have a valid claim. We will not rest until you receive the compensation you deserve for your losses, even if that means taking your case to trial. If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a slip and fall accident, reach out to a Santa Barbara slip and fall lawyer right away to discuss your options.
Who Is Responsible for Slip and Fall Accidents?
As a general rule, property owners and occupants are responsible for some injuries that happen on their property. Specifically, an owner or renter may be liable for any injuries that occur due to their negligence. An exception to this rule is that a property owner is not responsible for injuries to a person who was trespassing on their property. If you do not know how to show that a property owner’s negligence caused your injury, you are not alone. Negligence is a complex legal concept that even seasoned attorneys struggle to grasp. A Santa Barbara slip and fall attorney can explain the complexities of proving negligence and help prepare a strategy for your case. Our team at Frederick Law Firm has over three decades of experience helping clients throughout California. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment with one of our attorneys.
Types of Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents can result in a wide range of injuries, each with its own set of challenges for victims. Among the most common injuries are sprains and strains, which often affect ligaments and muscles, causing pain and limited mobility. Fractures and broken bones are also prevalent, with slip and fall incidents frequently leading to broken wrists, arms, hips, or ankles. Head injuries are a serious concern, as they can range from minor concussions to more severe traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). These injuries may have long-lasting effects on a person’s cognitive and physical abilities. In some cases, slip and fall accidents can cause spinal cord injuries, which may result in paralysis or reduced mobility. Soft tissue injuries, including bruises, contusions, and abrasions, are also common and can cause substantial pain and discomfort. Understanding the types of injuries that can result from slip and fall accidents is crucial for both victims and their legal representatives when seeking compensation for damages.
Proving Negligence in a Slip and Fall Claim
To establish that a property owner was negligent, you need to prove four elements: (1) duty of care, (2) breach of duty, (3) causation, and (4) damages. If you fail to prove one element, your entire claim will fail.
Duty of Care
Normally, property owners owe a duty of care to individuals using their property to keep the premises in a reasonably safe condition. Remember, a property owner does not owe this duty to trespassers.
Breach of Duty
A property owner breaches their duty of care when they fail to keep their property in a reasonably safe condition. An owner may breach their duty of care by:
- Leaving debris in pathways for an unreasonable amount of time,
- Failing to provide adequate lighting in walking areas,
- Lack of warnings for wet or icy conditions,
- Leaving food or drink spills exposed, or
- Failing to warn of open and obvious dangers.
For example, say you are shopping in a department store aisle. While shopping, you slip on a wet spot on the floor caused by an employee mopping. However, there was not a “wet floor” sign posted to warn you of the wet floor. In this case, the grocery store owner or manager breached their duty to you.
Causation means establishing a direct link between the property owner’s negligence and your slip and fall accident. In other words, you must show that the property owner’s negligence was the direct cause of your injury. While this may seem relatively straightforward, issues can arise when trying to prove causation. Property owners will often argue that something other than the dangerous condition caused the injury suffered by the victim.
Lastly, you must suffer harm to pursue compensation for a slip and fall accident. In other words, you cannot file a lawsuit if your injury did not lead to financial losses.
How Can a Santa Barbara Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer Help My Case?
While establishing the four elements of negligence may seem simple, that is not the case. The property owner will present their own argument to defeat every element of your negligence claim. For example, consider that after falling on a spilled drink inside a grocery store, you file a slip and fall claim seeking damages for a sprained wrist. The property owner may allege that another factor, like your poor vision, resulted in your fall instead of the condition of their premises. Alternatively, consider that you fall on a wet floor in a department store and seek to recover damages for a broken foot. However, the store owner presents proof that your foot was broken prior to the fall. Thus, whether you suffered harm in the slip and fall accident may come into question.
Where Can Slip and Fall Accidents Happen?
A slip and fall accident can occur almost anywhere. They typically happen in places owned or occupied by a private party. Slip and fall accidents are common in the following places:
- Grocery stores,
- Department stores,
- Trampoline parks,
- Amusement parks,
- Parking lots, and
- Construction sites.
Any time a private business opens itself up to consumers and other invitees, it may face liability for a slip and fall accident. Whether you qualify to file a lawsuit for your slip and fall injuries will vary from case to case. Contact Frederick Law Firm today so we can review the facts of your slip and fall claim.
Contact a Slip and Fall Attorney in Santa Barbara Today to Discuss Your Case
Our founding attorney Jacqueline Vitti Frederick has over 40 years of experience advocating for the rights of injured victims. With a slip & fall attorney in Santa Barbara, CA, by your side, you can rest assured that your case is in the hands of an experienced legal advocate. Our team will take the time to review the details of your case and prepare a personalized strategy that ensures the maximum compensation possible. If necessary, we will take your case all the way to trial. If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a slip and fall accident, reach out to an attorney at Frederick Law Firm as soon as possible. Contact us today.