Over one million Americans fall victim to slip and fall accidents every year according to the center for disease control and Prevention (CDC). Out of those, over ten thousand incidents are fatal. Most of the time, it’s not the victims’ fault. By law, home and property owners must maintain their premises to ensure that they are safe. Premises liability dictates that you should be compensated if your injuries are a result of the owner’s negligence. In such situations, what you do is crucial for your eligibility for compensation. Here is a breakdown of what to do after a slip and fall accident in Tampa.
Inspect the scene
Try and find out what caused you to slip. Was the floor wet? Or is it just a slippery surface? More importantly, was there a sign urging extra caution? These details will help you identify if there was any negligence. To strengthen your case, take many photos of the scene. This will go a long way in proving your claims in court.
Photos might not be enough; have some witnesses to help corroborate your version of events. Inquire about what they saw. If their version also points towards negligence, make sure to collect their contact information and addresses so that you can contact them later. Your attorney may need to follow up with them for detailed written statements. They may also be required to come and testify in your defense.
Seek medical attention
Ensure that you see a doctor so that any injuries are checked out and documented. It is crucial to do it immediately so that the injuries cannot be blamed on something else. This is also beneficial as injuries you failed to notice might also be diagnosed. These medical records will be important pieces of evidence in case you want to seek compensation.
Make official reports
It is important to report the incident to the manager of the store or building. Give them your account of events so that they can record an official incident report. Ask for a copy of the incident report. Failure to make such reports may weaken your case. The building management may claim you did not take the incident seriously.
Do not give statements
After making your official report to the building manager, refrain from making any more statements on the issue. This also applies to insurance companies and even posting on social media. Such statements can be used against you in court. Again, refuse to sign any documents you may be urged to. However innocent the discussion may seem, at this point your silence will be golden. A Tampa personal injury attorney can guide you on how to conduct yourself during this time.
Do not accept any form of settlement
Most people do not know how much their injury claims could be. Insurance companies will offer you a quick settlement to avoid the potential payout before you engage an attorney and advance to court.
Engage a personal injury attorney as soon as possible
To be able to get the compensation you deserve, engage a reputable Tampa personal injury attorney. With your account of events, witness statements and after reviewing the evidence you collected, your attorney will be able to estimate how much compensation you deserve. This will help you in negotiations with the insurance company or in court.
Many people are left with lifelong injuries or lose their lives to slip and fall injuries. Though caution is always advised, sometimes it is not enough to protect you. What you do after such events will determine whether you or your loved one gets justice.
Author Bio: Douglas Pitassi is a freelance writer and small business blogger.