Bethesda Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer
Slip and fall accidents are no laughing matter. They can cause serious, catastrophic, and even fatal injuries. If you have been hurt in a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, contact Malloy Law Offices, LLC at (888) 607-8690 to speak to a Bethesda Slip and Fall Accident lawyer right away. You may have a premises liability claim for compensation.
Why Choose Malloy Law Offices, LLC?
- We believe that everyone who suffers an injury has the right to claim what he or she deserves. Our slip and fall attorneys in Bethesda are committed to aggressively pursuing maximum compensation for our clients.
- Our attorneys have been practicing law for more than 15 years. We have the knowledge, skills, and resources to effectively handle slip and fall accident claims.
- In addition to English, we speak Spanish and Russian, for clients who are more comfortable with those languages.
Why You Need a Bethesda Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer
Slip and fall accidents can happen at any time of year, not just during winter. Some of the most common ways a person may be injured through a slip and fall are on wet or slippery surfaces, highly used areas, at grocery stores, on sidewalks and ramps, apartments, and commercial spaces, among others. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), slip and fall accidents are the third-highest cause of accidental death in the United States as of 2014. If a slip and fall accident occurred on public or private property, property owners can be held responsible for injuries that occur on their premises. When their negligence creates (or fails to fix) dangerous conditions, people who are hurt as a result can receive compensation for their injuries and losses. That is why it is highly important to contact a personal injury attorney as soon as you have received proper medical care following your accident.
How Slip and Falls Happen
Maryland, DC, and Virginia are home to numerous grocery stores, chains, big box stores, and retail shops. Often, a customer may be in one of these locations and accidentally slip on a wet surface or an item that had negligently been left in an area with high traffic. These seemingly minor occurrences can happen simply by forgetting to put up a Wet Floor sign, or not seeing a grape that had fallen off the bunch and rolled across the floor.
However, when these slip and falls occur, they can have devastating effects on the victim. An unsuspecting customer could step on the grape or wet floor and have their feet fly out from under them, causing them to potentially suffer injuries such as torn ligaments, sprained or broken ankles or kneecaps, and even fractured skulls, concussions, or traumatic brain injuries.
If a person or their loved one has suffered a slip and fall, the first thing they should do is see their doctor to determine if any treatment is necessary. Following that, they should consider bringing their case to an experienced slip and fall lawyer as soon as possible.
Hazardous Conditions that Can Cause Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and falls are more likely to occur on properties with hazards. These include:
- Floors that have been recently mopped or waxed
- Uneven surfaces
- Loose floorboards, rugs, or mats
- Splashed oil or grease that is not immediately removed
- Spilled liquids that are not cleaned up right away
- Potholes in parking lots
- Trash or debris on floors or walkways
- Cords that run across walkways
- Poor lighting that makes it difficult to see obstacles
- Broken or missing handrails in stairways
Below are some common injuries that can occur from a slip and fall. A slip and fall lawyer will be able to determine whether a slip and fall or premises liability case can be brought against the owner of the location where the accident occurred.
- Sprains: A sprain occurs when tendons and ligaments surrounding a joint (such as a knee or an ankle) are strained beyond their normal range of motion. This strain can even be so severe as to cause multiple degrees of tearing, with the worst being a complete tear through the ligament or tendon. The area will become inflamed and tender to the touch, with the most severe sprains potentially requiring surgery to repair the tear or tears. Sprains can happen very easily when someone slips and tries to catch themselves, or their limb twists the wrong way as they fall. Because it can take time for the injury to make itself known, anyone who suspects they may have sprained their ankle or another area of their body should contact their doctor to receive medical care.
- Broken Bones: Everyone is at risk for a broken bone when they fall, whether it is from a ladder or other elevated location, or on an uneven surface. Elderly people are especially at risk because of fragile bones and slower reflex response. Broken hips, knees, ankles, and wrists are some of the injuries someone can receive from any slip and fall accident in or elsewhere. Just like with sprains, it may not be immediately noticeable that someone has suffered a broken or fractured bone. Taking the necessary steps to receive proper medical care should always be the first thing a person does after their slip and fall.
- Concussion: Concussions are serious injuries that should immediately be brought to the attention of and monitored by health professionals. According to the CDC, falls are the leading cause of head injury among older adults. Symptoms may include disorientation, dizziness, vomiting, and loss of consciousness. If any of this occurred after a slip and fall in a grocery store, retail store, or on a property such as an apartment building or even a private residence, the first step should be to contact a licensed medical professional in order to receive the appropriate medical care.
- Traumatic Brain Injury: Like a concussion, a traumatic brain injury can be a direct result of a slip and fall accident. In this case, however, the consequences are far more serious. Traumatic brain injuries indicate severe damage done to brain tissue, including bleeding around the brain, swelling, and possible permanent damage. Some lasting effects of a TBI are seizures, change in mood, short-term memory loss, and loss of motor function. If a traumatic brain injury is suspected, a doctor or the closest hospital should be contacted immediately to treat the injury and rule out or attempt to prevent any permanent effects.
- Back and Spinal Cord Injuries: The spinal cord can be easily injured in a slip and fall accident. Depending on whether the person wrenched their back by twisting too far in one direction, or if they damaged their vertebrae or the spinal cord itself upon hitting the ground, these injuries can be very painful with lasting side effects. It is possible to fracture, herniate, or break one or multiple vertebrae due to a fall. Depending on the location and severity of the break, it can potentially harm the spinal cord as well, causing partial or full paralysis of the legs, torso, and even arms, as well as a loss of sensation and permanent nerve damage. Visiting a health care professional should always be the first step someone should make after suffering an injury from a slip and fall accident to rule out greater injury.
Steps to Take Following a Slip and Fall
The first thing someone should do after suffering a slip and fall is to contact their healthcare provider for an examination. This is where any injuries will be discovered, if they aren’t apparent already, and addressed. The next step would be for them to reach out to an experienced slip and fall attorney to discuss their potential case. Ensuring all paperwork and documentation is organized and brought with them to the initial consultation is another incredibly important part of the process. This is where a skilled slip and fall attorney will be able to explain the intricacies of the law to the client and determine what that person’s options will be regarding their case. An experienced lawyer will not only recognize whether there is an opportunity to pursue damages, but they will have the intimate knowledge of personal injury laws and the court system to support their suit against the property owner, as well.
What Must You Prove In a Slip and Fall Accident Claim?
If you slip and fall on someone else’s property, the owner is not necessarily responsible for your injuries. Liability for a slip and fall accident depends on whether the owner or possessor of the property was negligent by causing or failing to prevent the accident. To recover damages for a slip and fall accident, you must either show either that:
- The property owner should have recognized the dangerous condition and repaired it or removed the danger but failed to do so. (Key questions are whether a reasonable person would have known the condition was hazardous and whether the property owner had sufficient opportunity to remedy the situation before your accident occurred.); or
- The property owner actually caused the dangerous condition leading to your accident, and it was reasonably foreseeable that someone could trip and fall because of the hazard.
Proving Negligence: Did the Property Owner Act Reasonably?
To be proven negligent and held liable for slip and fall accident injuries, the property owner must have failed to act as a reasonably prudent person would have acted under similar circumstances. Factors to consider as to whether the property owner acted reasonably include:
- Did the hazardous condition exist long enough that a reasonable property owner could have acted to eliminate it?
- Did the property owner routinely check for potential hazards on the property?
- Was there a reasonable justification for the potential hazard, and did that justification exist at the time of the slip and fall accident?
- Could the hazardous condition have been made less dangerous through preventative measures?
Contact Us for Your Free Consultation
If you or a loved one was hurt because of a property owner’s negligence or carelessness, get the medical care and legal advice you need. If you have a premises liability case, get strong legal representation to make sure you get the maximum amount of compensation to which you are entitled.
Our slip and fall attorneys at Malloy Law Offices, LLC have extensive experience with a variety of premises liability matters such as:
- Falls and trips on private or public property
- Accidents that occur on wet or slippery surfaces, including black ice
- Construction site accidents involving dangerous fences and walls, broken or uneven surfaces, falling objects, and debris, tools, and materials that were left out
- Injuries in apartment buildings and complexes with hazardous common areas, broken lights, broken stairs, malfunctioning systems, and other dangers
- Accidents in or near subways, trains, and buses
- Cases against water and sewer authorities and other public entities
Every slip-and-fall accident case is different, but all injury cases should be evaluated carefully. A Bethesda slip and fall accident lawyer will be able to review the facts of the case and fight tirelessly for the compensation you or your loved one deserves. Contact us today at (888) 607-8690 for your free consultation.