“Slip and fall” is somewhat of a catch-all term used in cases in which a person slips, trips, or stumbles on another person’s or business’s property and then falls, causing an injury. While the term slip and fall makes you think of an icy sidewalk or a wet floor, these injuries can be caused by everything from cracked sidewalks and potholes to uneven stairs and poor lighting. A number of defective, unsafe conditions can lead to a slip and fall injury. Depending on the circumstances, the property owner can be held legally responsible, resulting in a financial settlement for the injured.
Are Slip and Fall Cases Hard to Win?
If you’re injured while working, you don’t have to prove your employer was negligent. Even if you lose your balance and fall off a ladder and you alone are at fault, you still have a workers’ compensation case. If you’re injured due to a slip and fall accident when you’re not working, you have to prove negligence by a third party.
New Jersey is a “comparative negligence” state. That means you have to prove the other party was at least 50 percent negligent in causing your injury. For example, suppose you slip on an icy sidewalk in front of a coffee shop. That doesn’t mean the coffee shop owner is 100 percent negligent. Did you see the ice? If so, did you take extra care to avoid slipping or walk around it? Did other people walk in the same area and not fall? These and other questions determine the strength of your case.
Are slip and fall cases hard to win? The honest answer is that it depends on the specific facts of each case. Slip and Fall cases are fact sensitive, which means that the details really matter when assessing the prospects for success on the case.
What Determines Slip and Fall Case Payouts or Settlement Amounts?
Slip and fall case verdicts or settlement amounts are based on the extent of your injury and the negligence of the business or property owner. For example, if the defendant is 95 percent liable for the slip and fall, and the injury is serious, the compensation to the injured party is likely to be substantial.
Conversely, if you suffer a severe injury but the defendant is only 50 percent at fault for the accident, then the outcome will be lower than a case in which the Defendant’s negligence is 95 percent. This is because the full value of the injury is reduced by the Plaintiff’s percentage of comparative negligence.
Keep in mind that most slip and fall cases settle before trial with fewer than 10 percent of all cases actually going to trial before a jury. The fact is, people who are injured in slip and fall accidents and receive multimillion-dollar settlements are probably dealing with life-changing injuries. Edward P. Shamy, Jr. has represented injured individuals who have received a wide range of settlements, including payouts of greater than three quarters of a million dollars.
If you’ve been injured due to a slip and fall or trip and fall injury and believe fault lies with the property owner or business owner, contact the Law Offices of Edward P. Shamy. We can review the facts, help you determine how strong your case is, and pursue the compensation you deserve.
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