Slip and Fall Accident Attorney in Marietta, Georgia
Have you fallen or slipped to the point where you hurt yourself? These types of accidents can initially appear to be harmless, but sometimes they result in long-term, lingering injuries. Depending on where the accident occurred, it could have happened because someone was negligent in properly taking care of the property. Sometimes property owners don’t clean up after spills, or neglect to repair broken or cracked sidewalks, stairs, etc…. This could make them responsible for your injuries. If this has happened to you or someone you know, it is important that legal representation is followed to allow the victim in this incident full compensation if the law allows it. You may be entitled to receive compensation to help pay your medical expenses.
The attorneys at The Young Law Firm are your ideal option if you have been injured in a slip and fall accident and need to receive compensation for your injuries. Whether the incident occurred in a shopping mall, grocery store or office building, our experienced Marietta Personal Injury Lawyer will work with you to determine the viability of a potential lawsuit. Property owners are required by the law in Georgia, to ensure that their premises are free from any type of dangerous hazards that may result in injuries. If this requirement has not been adhered to and you have suffered injuries as a result of unsafe property conditions, then you may be able to recover monetary damages, with the assistance of our slip and fall attorneys.
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Premises liability and how you can receive compensation
How Our Attorney Can Help With These Claims
Our top Marietta Personal Injury Lawyer can assist in determining, whether your case is a viable slip and fall one. In the process of handling the claim, your slip and fall attorney may:
- Gather Evidence: To prove negligence on the part of the owner or occupier in the maintenance of the property, and also that your injuries were contributed to by this negligence. In ascertaining this your attorney may:
- Visit the actual scene of the accident
- Take relevant photographs of the dangerous condition
- Review the video surveillance to determine the length of time the unsafe condition existed
- Question the witnesses
- Obtain copies of the accident reports
- Review the operational records of the store and their cleaning logs
It is important that an attorney is contacted promptly after a slip and fall accident has occurred, as witnesses may forget any important details. Also, over time key pieces of evidence may be misplaced or destroyed. Depositions will be taken from store employees by the attorney in some cases, to determine if the area where the accident occurred was cleaned and maintained on a regular basis.
Assess Injuries and Necessary Medical Treatment
Your medical records will be reviewed by your attorney to determine the extent of your injuries. Additionally, working with a medical expert will afford the attorney the opportunity, to be able to offer testimony regarding any medical treatments needed for your recovery, as well as rehabilitation procedures.
Injured victims in any slip and fall cases, suffer back injuries which are difficult to diagnose and treat, with the severity becoming apparent several months after a slip and fall accident has occurred. To ensure full compensation for any damages suffered, a medical expert will be required to properly evaluate the extent of your injuries.
Negotiate a Settlement: There may be some instances that the attorney may be able to negotiate a satisfactory settlement, with either the owner of the property or their respective insurance company. This usually occurs when property owners and insurance companies want to avoid the costs associated with a jury trial and any negative media reports that may result. Any evidence regarding the economic and non-economic damages incurred due to the slip and fall accident may be presented by your attorney as a part of the settlement process. The case will be prepared for trial by your attorney if the negotiations for a settlement result in an unsatisfactory offer.
Elements of a Georgia Slip and Fall Lawsuit
There are two elements according to Georgia law, that someone who has been injured in a slip and fall accident must satisfy, in order for the claim to be considered valid:
- The owner of the property had knowledge of the existence of the dangerous condition, or through the use of due care should have reasonably known that the condition existed.
- The injured victim had no knowledge of the dangerous condition.
Your slip and fall attorney has to present evidence, to prove that the owner of the property should have known about the dangerous condition. The evidence would include proof that the dangerous condition had existed for a very long period of time, so if the owner had exercised reasonable care during the inspection of the premises, he or she would have discovered its existence. For example, evidence could be presented that the employees in a department store were in the immediate vicinity of the location of the dangerous condition, and the hazard should have been noticed and removed. Additional evidence could be presented by your attorney, concerning the fact the store was understaffed, and consequently, the owner of the store failed to satisfy the duty to ensure that the property is maintained free from hazards.
Dealing with Insurance Companies in Slip and Fall Cases
In several cases, the insurance companies for property owners attempt to avoid any liability, by claiming that somehow the victim could have chosen to walk around the dangerous condition, but did not do so. The insurance companies, soon after an accident has occurred, have in cases asked leading questions of the slip and fall victims, in an attempt to let them make concessions inadvertently, with the intention to use them to limit the liability of the insurance company, if a lawsuit is filed.
An example would be when insurance companies try to argue that the “open and obvious doctrine” applies, by claiming that the injured person was not concentrating on where he or she was walking, and therefore failed to exercise due care. A property owner is not liable for injuries under the “open and obvious doctrine” if the existence of the dangerous condition was obvious. This doctrine implies then, that the injured person voluntarily walked into the dangerous condition. It is important that prior to giving any statements to an insurance company, you consult an attorney who will advise you on your rights under the laws of Georgia.
Common Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents
Any of the following can indicate negligence on the part of either the property owner or occupier:
- Improper maintenance of roads, sidewalks, and buildings
- Failure to display proper safety signs and warnings
- Unlit walkways
- Hazardous staircases or escalators, which includes broken steps, any missing handles, or other malfunction
- Wet, unmarked surfaces
- Hazardous material in the path of a pedestrian
- Building code violations
- Understaffed nursing homes
Please contact The Young Law Firm at (770) 795-9596 to schedule your consultation, if you or a loved one has been injured in a slip and fall accident in Marietta or Cobb County.