Suffering from a slip-and-fall accident in public is no fun. One moment you’re taking care of your shopping, then in a flash, you’re on the floor. At best, this experience can be a bit embarrasing, but what do you do when you suffer serious injuries from your fall?
Proving Negligence & Liability
In order to be held “negligent” and therefore liable for damages in a slip and fall case, a property owner (or the owner’s agent or employee) must have failed to act as a reasonably prudent person would have acted under circumstances similar to those leading up to the accident. Here are some factors that plaintiffs should consider:
In slip and fall cases, the property owner (or his or her insurance carrier) may argue that the plaintiff is partially (or totally) responsible for the accident that led to the injuries. This kind of argument is made under a legal concept known as “comparative fault,” and states have codified the concept in “comparative negligence” and “contributory negligence” laws. The rules in place in a given state will affect a plaintiff’s ability to recover compensation if they’re found to share some blame for the accident.
Massachusetts uses the 51 percent comparative negligence rule, which is similar to several other states. Under the rule, plaintiffs can only recover if their share of the blame was less than 51 percent. If plaintiffs are 51 percent or more at fault, then they most likely cannot recover at all.
Contact An Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a slip-and-fall accident, you should speak to one of experienced attornies to learn what your next step should be.