When Is a Property Owner Liable for Slip and Fall Injuries?
A typical walk down the sidewalk or store aisle can lead to an unfortunate and perhaps debilitating injury if property owner negligence creates a hazard that could have been prevented. While injuries that result from a slip and fall are often minor, they sometimes involve a significant impact that can cause both short- and long-term pain and suffering. In some cases, these types of accidents can cause medical issues that last a lifetime. Potential slip and fall injuries include cuts, muscle and tendon sprains or tears, bone fractures, concussions, traumatic brain injuries, and spinal cord injuries.
Under New York law, a person or business that controls a property must “use reasonable care to keep the premises in a reasonably safe condition for the protection of all persons whose presence is reasonably foreseeable.” If you have sustained an injury you believe occurred because a property owner failed to follow those guidelines, an experienced personal injury attorney can help you pursue a lawsuit to recover damages for your medical expenses, lost wages, and physical and emotional hardship.
Here are some frequent causes of slip and fall accidents:
Snow and Ice
As fall turns to winter here in New York, snow and ice become increasingly dangerous for pedestrians. Ice-covered steps and slippery walkways present a hazard that is not always noticeable with the naked eye, and the results of a slip can be devastating, especially for senior citizens. A business owner must take precautions to ensure their customers can enter and exit the premises in a safe manner.
Moisture or Debris
Because of employee inattention, restaurants, grocery stores, and other businesses may have flooring that presents a danger due to spilled liquid, food, or other impediments that can escape people’s immediate vision. It is up to these establishments to maintain safe maneuverability for their customers at all times.
Poor Lighting, Faulty Handrails, and Dangerous Stairs
These dangers might appear on their own or in tandem, and they often exist inside large apartment buildings where ineffective lighting can cause people not to see a broken rail or damaged stair. These risks are also often found outdoors, and they can be compounded by years of weather and insufficient maintenance. Property owners may be liable if they fail to take steps to correct these hazards.
Uneven Sidewalks and Surfaces
Improperly constructed or aged sidewalks and floors may develop lips or height differences that can catch a person’s foot and cause them to fall. These hazards are rarely created overnight. They might take years to become dangerous, and a property owner has plenty of time to correct the issue. Failure to do so can be considered negligence.
Contact a Brooklyn Premises Liability Attorney
If you were injured in a slip and fall accident that you believe occurred due to someone’s negligence, Goldberg Sager & Associates can sit down with you to discuss a possible lawsuit or claim against a property owner or municipality that failed to keep you safe. Contact a New York City personal injury lawyer at 718-514-9516 to schedule a free consultation.