Often used interchangeably, a “slip and fall” or “trip and fall” case can be made if we can prove that the owner or caretaker of the property knew or should have known of the slipping or tripping hazard that caused your injury. Fortunately for others – but unfortunately for your case – evidence of a slipping or tripping hazard is often cleaned or removed quickly. Rarely is that same hazard left unchanged days after your injury. If you are seriously injured as a result of losing your footing, there are a few things you should do as soon as possible.
Make sure you or someone you are with photographs the hazard and any warning signs in the area.
Measure the Hazard
How big was the spill? Did it look like it was dripping in one spot or was it spread over a distance? How many drops of liquid were there? Did it look like a shopping cart wheel had run through it? How deep was hole? The size can be used to show that the hazard should have been known or had been there for a length of time.
Color of Hazard
Was it clear water? Was it dirty water? Was it oil or laundry detergent leaking from a container on a shelf? What color was the scuff mark? Did the tripping hazard blend in with the ground? Were there distractions taking your focus away from the hazard like merchandise displays or other hazards?
You must make your own record! It is likely going to be documented by the owner of the property but they will probably never give you that information. Document any statements that were made by witnesses or employees. We can help preserve any remaining record. Don’t wait to call so we can get working on your case!
Collect Names of Witnesses
You may be surrounded by people who want to help and claim they saw what happened. Get their names, phone numbers, addresses, and email addresses. If they can tell you what they saw, write it down!
Do Not Sign Anything
The owner or caretaker of the property may try to get you settle or hold them harmless. As much as this may sound like a nice gesture, they should never prevent you from speaking to an attorney first!