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What to do after a slip and fall accident

Your ultimate course of action, whether you get a lawyer or not, should be guided by your injuries and the circumstances of the accident.

Everyone takes a spill sometimes. You may not see that plush dinosaur on the floor, trip, and fall. You may get out of the bath, slip on the wet floor, and tumble down.

However, there is a big difference between falling over a toy and a slip-and-fall accident due to negligence.

One million people suffer slip and fall injuries annually, with their injuries forming part of 12% of total annual falls. Five percent of people who fall sustain a severe fracture, which can lead to long-term issues. Moreover, treating slip and fall injuries costs an average of $34 annually.

Fortunately, a lot of slip-and-fall accidents only result in minor injuries. Still, it is crucial to know what to do if you fall because of a company or shopping center’s negligence.

Seeking medical attention is non-negotiable
You must find medical help immediately if you slip and fall in public. The same applies if you fall at home. A sudden fall causes an adrenaline spike, which may mask the pain of your injuries.

A doctor will examine you thoroughly and create a medical record. This record includes the date of the accident, injuries sustained, and the suggested treatment. This part of the process is crucial because your medical record will become evidence if you decide to open a case of negligence.

If you are older than 65, getting to a doctor or ER immediately after a fall is even more important. According to the CDC, 38,742 adults over the age of 65 died in 2021 after an unintentional fall.

Getting medical treatment fast can help prevent complications and speed up recovery after a fall.

Gathering dvidence at the accident scene
After receiving medical attention, you can start gathering evidence. Go back to where you fell and take pictures of the site. Your photos should include close-ups of the hazard that caused the fall. For instance, if there is water on a floor and no warning sign, take several photos.

If you were on a sidewalk outside an office building and tripped and fell because of uneven bricks, take photos of the sidewalk and the surroundings. Try to get contact information from potential witnesses to your fall. Witness statements make a big difference in establishing liability for slip and fall accidents.

If you fall on public property, like a mall or business, report the accident to the manager in charge.

Write down all the details of the accident
It is also critical to write down the details of your fall while you can still remember them. If you are seriously injured, this may not be possible right away. However, if you sustained minor injuries, try to do this immediately.

Ideally, you should note the date, time, and location of the incident. You should write down exactly why you fell and whether you saw any warning signs put up. Additionally, you should add a description of your injuries and pain backed up by your medical record.

If you find witnesses, you can add their contact details to your list. If you spoke to the relevant manager, you can note your conversation.

Details are crucial for legal cases, so write everything you can think of, even if it seems unimportant.

Keep oroof of expenses
Falling and injuring yourself can lead to several unplanned expenses. These expenses include doctor’s bills, transport, and even lost wages in severe cases. If you believe you fell because of negligence, you must keep the proof of these expenses for your legal case.

Keep all the invoices and receipts from doctors, the hospital, and the pharmacy. Should you require physical therapy, keep these invoices. If you cannot drive for a while due to injury, keep a record of how much you spend on alternative transport.

If you have to take leave from work due to medical treatment or injury, get official documentation of lost wages from your employer. These documents will allow you to claim for slip-and-fall-related expenses.

Consider hiring a lawyer
Serious injuries and unaffordable expenses will affect you over the long term. At this point, you may want to consider hiring a personal injury lawyer.

A lawyer will cost you extra money, but they can advise you on proceeding with legal action and recouping some funds.

It is necessary to get a lawyer if you can prove your fall happened due to negligence and that you suffered severe injuries because of it. Your lawyer can even assist you with getting a settlement from the relevant insurance company to cover your expenses.

What not to do after a slip and fall accident
There are several other things to be aware of after a slip and fall accident. For instance, it is not a good idea to post details of your fall and resulting injuries on social media. Insurance companies can use this to their advantage if you want to claim compensation.

To be safe, avoid posting anything about your fall on social media. Also, never try to name and shame the business or shopping center involved. Instead, focus on your legal case and do what your lawyer advises.

Also, never embellish any of the details surrounding your fall. Stick to what the doctor’s report says, and only provide details that you know are true. If the insurance company calls you for information, tell the truth but do not offer unnecessary details. In most cases, a lawyer should communicate with the insurance provider.

Your ultimate course of action, whether you get a lawyer or not, should be guided by your injuries and the circumstances of the accident. This is the best way to gain control of the situation and get the compensation you deserve.

Moving on after a slip and fall accident
Slip and fall accidents are often frightening and painful. Fortunately, you can move past them using the correct process and prioritizing your health. The steps outlined above give you a general direction, but it is ultimately up to you to use legal options available to you. When you decide on the best way forward for yourself, you can claim compensation and move on from what is often a very unpleasant experience.