A slip and fall can have serious consequences, both physically and financially. You may be facing medical bills, lost wages, and emotional distress. In some cases, a Washington, DC slip and fall lawyer can help you recover damages for your losses. If you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident in Washington, DC, you could be entitled to financial compensation. Contact an experienced Washington DC slip and fall lawyer at Regan Zambri Long.
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If unsafe conditions on someone else’s property caused you or a loved one to slip and fall, resulting in an injury, you might have legal options to recover compensation through a slip and fall lawsuit. But you may wonder, “Do I need a slip and fall lawyer near me?”
An experienced slip and fall accident attorney can provide the advice you need to help navigate a premises liability claim. Our Washington, DC slip and fall lawyers can determine who is responsible for your injuries, calculate your claim worth, and negotiate with the property owner’s insurance company on your behalf. If we cannot reach an agreement, we can successfully represent you in court.
At Regan Zambri Long PLLC, we have decades of experience helping clients recover multimillion-dollar settlements and verdicts after slip and fall accidents. As a result, our DC personal injury lawyers can offer answers if you need to know what to do after a slip and fall accident.
Although various dangerous conditions may cause slip and fall accidents, most are preventable when property owners maintain a safe environment.
The most common causes fall cases of preventable slip and fall accidents may include:
Restaurants, grocery stores, and other businesses should always clean up puddles, spills, or other wet surfaces. At the very least, warning signs should be placed around the area to indicate the wet surfaces for customers.
In some cases, parking lots and other areas may have severely uneven surfaces that create tripping hazards. Private property owners must maintain walkways and paths on their land, while the city or other government agency is typically responsible for public sidewalks.
Property owners should remove clutter from areas with heavy foot traffic, such as stairwells and hallways.
Poor or no lighting in stairwells and hallways can hide objects, spills, or other slip and fall hazards.
Snow, ice, sleet, and rain can create slip and fall hazards inside and outside a business. Nevertheless, a property owner must take reasonable steps to remove these hazards from the premises.
Slip and fall accidents involving these staircases in poor condition are more likely to result in catastrophic injury or death.
Some slip and fall injuries occur because the hospital or nursing home staff fail to supervise patients. For example, hospital patients may suffer injuries after falling out of bed or losing balance.
In Washington, DC, you may be able to bring a premises liability lawsuit against a property or business owner if one of the following incidents is true:
If a property owner or business fails to correct slip and fall hazards they know about, then the owner could be held accountable for your injury.
For example, the grocery store employees knew about a spill but failed to clean up the puddle or warn customers. As a result, you don’t notice the puddle, causing you to slip and fall, breaking your hip. In this example, the store can be held responsible for the accident.
A property owner might be liable for your injury even if they overlooked the dangerous conditions but should have known the danger. An example would be a property owner failing to notice a burned-out light in a stairwell. If you fall down these stairs due to poor lighting, the negligent property owner may be legally responsible for your injuries.
Here is an example of a third-party accident: it’s a very snowy day, and you are walking into the grocery store. The rubber entry mat is supposed to soak up any water. However, the mat manufacturer cut corners and used cheaper rubber that doesn’t hold the water. With the wintry weather outside, the rubber mat is now oversaturated. As you step on the mat, it slips underneath you, causing you to fall.
In this scenario, you may be able to hold the manufacturer accountable for your injuries sustained from slip and fall accident. This situation may be considered a product liability case against the manufacturer.
To prove a slip and fall injury in Washington, DC, you’ll need evidence that not only the hazard was present before your accident but that the property owner was aware of the hazard and did nothing to fix it. Some types that you will need to prove your claim include:
Make sure you take pictures of the area where you fell. You will want photos of the accident scene and of the hazard itself. Time is of the essence here, as the property owner might try to fix the issue after the fall, compromising your evidence to get photographs before leaving the property.
If available, footage can show the presence of the hazard and even your fall itself. To get video footage, your slip and fall attorney must send a letter to the property owner to protect the footage so it is not erased.
Their statements can be valuable if anyone saw you fall and can describe the dangerous condition. If you can, try to get contact information from anyone who witnessed your fall so your attorney can speak to them later.
After the accident, filing an incident report with the property or business owner is important. This document will give vital information about the slip and fall, such as when it occurred, how it happened, what caused the accident, and what happened afterward.
Maintenance records can show the owner knew about the hazard previously and what steps they took to fix it. This can be vital to your case because it may show there was knowledge of the danger, but the property owner or business failed to act.
Seek medical attention immediately after the slip and fall. This is important because it will prove how severe your injuries may be and what treatment must be done to repair them.
Remember, the specific evidence needed will vary depending on the circumstances of your case. Consulting with a lawyer can help you determine the most relevant evidence and how to obtain it effectively.
If you or a loved one suffered a slip and fall injury on someone else’s property, contact an attorney from our law firm as soon as possible. Filing a legal claim against the property owner or other parties can help pay for expenses related to your injuries. However, businesses and other property owners may take steps to conceal or correct hazards immediately following the accident. Therefore, seeking a qualified personal injury law firm in Washington, DC, is essential.
The Washington, DC slip and fall lawyers at Regan Zambri Long PLLC also take cases in Virginia and Maryland. We handle cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you do not owe us a fee unless you recover compensation. For a free consultation explaining what to do after a slip and fall accident, call (202) 960-4596 or fill out our confidential online contact form.
Slipping and falling on public property in Washington, DC, can be a complex situation with unique legal considerations since the responsible party can be a government entity. Much like private property owners and businesses, the District of Columbia has a legal duty of care to maintain its property, such as sidewalks, parks, or buildings. You must hold the government liable if they fail to maintain the property, causing slip and fall accidents.
However, DC has stringent guidelines when dealing with an accident on its property. For example, if you slip and fall because of snow or ice on the sidewalk, the government cannot be liable for your injuries unless it has time to address the conditions.
If you slip and fall on public property, you must report the fall to the proper government agency. There are deadlines for applying for a personal injury claim against the government, so the sooner you file a claim, the better.
Each case is unique, so consulting a DC slip and fall lawyer is vital for understanding your situation and rights.
The short answer is yes. Private and commercial property owners are responsible for keeping their properties safe for anyone visiting. If you slip and fall on your neighbor’s property and are injured, your neighbor should provide their homeowners’ insurance information so you can submit a claim.
Depending on what injuries you may have sustained and the events surrounding the slip and fall accident, you may be eligible for the following:
In addition to these economic expenses, you may be entitled to non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and a diminished quality of life.
Your first step is to get as much evidence as you have at the scene. You should take photos of the scene and gather any information from witnesses.
Make sure the property owner or business is aware of the accident. If an accident occurs in a company, let the manager know what happened and ensure an incident report is created.
Try to document everything you can about the accident, such as when it occurred, what you were doing, and how the area’s conditions were.
Seek medical treatment as soon as possible to learn the extent of your injuries. Even if you don’t think you were seriously injured, you should always follow up with your doctor whenever you get into an accident. Sometimes, you may not feel the pain from the accident until days later.
For more information or to schedule a free consultation, contact a Washington, DC slip and fall injury lawyer at Regan Zambri Long PLLC today.