The ABC's of slip and fall accidents in Florida

We all (or at least the non-millennials among us) remember the ads from the 80's and 90's of a lonely elderly woman who falls alone in her bathroom, reaches for her life support necklace, and cries, "Help! I've fallen and I can't get up!"

Fast forward to today, where we are not only advancing in age but our parents and our grandparents are as well, and suddenly that old commercial doesn't seem so funny, does it?

Unfortunately, slip and fall accidents are far too common and are no laughing matter. They can result in serious injury to both young and old. With that in mind, The Dempsey Law Firm, P.A. has taken the time to compile some important information about slip and fall accidents in Florida.

Slip and falls happen all the time in Florida. In many of the very same, ordinary places we all go everyday, there are hidden dangers which can cause serious bodily injury. Whether its the grocery store or the mall, the ball game or the ballet, accidents can happen on stairs, slippery floors and unseen objects. When you slip and fall in Miami or Fort Lauderdale, you need to be able to prove your case to recover for your injuries

The first hurdle to overcome is whether the owner of the property could have prevented the accident. While we all have a duty to act as a reasonably prudent person, to be responsible and aware of our surroundings and take all proper precautions. Property owners have a duty to ensure that their property is safe from any reasonably foreseeable dangers, and to take any reasonable steps to make sure there are no dangerous conditions on the property. Florida judges are tasked with determining whether property owners act negligently with regard to keeping their property safe for the public.

There are a few requirements that must be met in order to recover for a slip and fall in Florida, including:

  • Whether the property owner knew or should have known of the dangerous condition which caused the injury
  • Whether the property owner knew and failed to take any action to fix the dangerous problem, or whether the owner should have known but failed to take any preventative action.
  • Whether the property owner caused the dangerous condition
  • Was the property owner negligent in maintaining his property?

Not only do you have to show that the property owner is liable for your injuries, but you must prove that you the injured acted with reasonableness, and that it is not unreasonable to think the dangerous condition could have been fixed or prevented. Factors to consider include:

  • How long was the dangerous condition in place prior to your accident?
  • What kind of inspections, cleaning practices and other safeguards are in place at the property?
  • If it was an unseen object which caused the fall, was there a legitimate reason for the object to be where it was? And, is it reasonable to think that object could have caused your fall? I.e., you didn't trip over a bird feather, did you?

One more piece of important information to know is that you could be found not only partially at fault for your own injury, but you could be found completely at fault for your injury.  That would mean that you could fail to recover any compensation for your injuries and happens depending on what you were doing at the time of the accident. Why you were on the property? Were there any posted warnings? Were you participating in dangerous activities?.

The smart step to take is to contact an experienced, Pembroke Pines personal injury attorney who can advise you on your rights, and on how to get you on the road to recovery.