When you visit another’s property – whether it is a store, restaurant, public park or a neighbor’s residence – you have every reason to expect that the property will be free of hazards. You don’t expect to slip on a dangerously slick surface, for instance, or get caught in frayed carpeting. Unfortunately, these types of slip and fall accidents can – and do – happen all of the time in Athens. If you get injured in one of these accidents, you owe it to yourself to get experienced legal assistance as soon as possible.
At Adamson & Cleveland, LLC, our slip and fall lawyers will take immediate steps to protect your rights and pursue all compensation that you are due. We can bring nearly 40 years of combined legal experience to your case and record of pursuing maximum compensation on behalf of our clients in Athens and throughout Georgia. To discuss your case, contact us today and receive a free consultation.
How Can a Lawyer Help with Your Slip and Fall Injury?
Like many Athens residents, you may have no idea about your rights or the process involved in seeking compensation after you have been injured in a slip and fall accident. Our lawyers can help you by:
- Explaining to you the process of filing a personal injury claim
- Helping you to understand important legal terms such as premises liability and negligence
- Determining the precise cause of your slip and fall accident by opening an investigation of your case
- Calculating the extent of your damages
- Identifying the liable party and bringing a claim against that party
- Issuing a demand letter and negotiating your settlement amount
- Filing a lawsuit against the responsible party and bringing your case to trial if necessary
Our Athens slip and fall lawyers will also remain available and accessible to answer your questions and offer support to you throughout the entirety of the process. Our attorneys give our personal cell phone numbers to our clients for a reason. We believe that communication is the key to a successful attorney-client relationship. We never want you to be in the dark about your case.
Why Do Slip and Fall Accidents Happen in Athens?
As we have seen through the years, slip and falls are usually the result of a property owner’s negligence. Examples of common causes of slip and falls in Athens include:
- Wet or slippery surfaces
- Lack of handrails or railings
- Uneven walking surfaces
- Lack of supervision and assistance (in a nursing home setting)
- Defects in floors
- Torn carpeting
- Cluttered floors or objects in walkways
- Broken stairs, elevators or escalators
Negligence is the failure to act with the proper degree of care for a given situation. When the above hazards exist on a property, the property owner has neglected his or her duty of care to those who may enter the property. Generally speaking, if a hazard would not have existed but for the property owner’s negligence, a victim of a slip and fall should be entitled to recover damages.
Who Can Be Held Liable for a Slip and Fall?
A property owner may be held liable for slip and fall accidents and related injuries that occur. In most cases, the duty of a property owner is to discover and to repair or correct any hazards that exist on their property within a reasonable amount of time. If a property owner neglects this duty, then that owner has breached the duty of care owed to visitors.
Note that a property owner’s duty of care is only extended to those who are upon the property lawfully – that is, invitees and licensees. The duty of care is not extended to trespassers. The only duty that a property owner owes to a trespasser is to refrain from causing willful or wanton harm.
How Do You Prove Fault in a Slip and Fall Case?
In order to hold a property owner liable for injuries resulting from a slip and fall, the plaintiff in the case must prove:
- A hazardous condition existed on the property.
- The property owner knew or should have known of the hazardous condition.
- The property owner failed to repair the condition with a reasonable amount of time or warn visitors about the condition.
- The hazardous condition was the proximate cause of the slip and fall (the injury would not have occurred but for the hazardous condition)
To prove these elements, you must gather evidence such as:
- Photos of the hazardous condition
- Any proof that the owner knew of the condition (such as a property maintenance log or reports of prior incidents)
- Video footage of the slip and fall
- Eyewitnesses statements.
Our Athens slip and fall lawyers at Adamson & Cleveland, LLC, can assist you by investigating your case and gathering all evidence necessary for your claim.
What Damages Can You Recover in a Slip and Fall Claim?
If you are injured in a slip and fall accident in Georgia and bring a claim against the property owner, you can seek compensation for the full value of losses that you have suffered, including compensation for your economic damages and non-economic damages. The types of damages that may be available include:
- Medical expenses (including rehabilitation costs)
- Lost wages
- Pain, suffering and emotional distress
If you have suffered any additional damages, you can count on our lawyers to aggressively advocate for your right to compensation.
How Long Do You Have to File a Slip and Fall Lawsuit?
If you suffer a slip and fall accident and suffer damages as a result of it, you should meet with an attorney as soon as possible. If you wait too long to bring your claim, you could be permanently barred from recovery under Georgia’s statute of limitations for personal injury actions.
Generally, under Georgia law, the amount of time that a claimant has to file a personal injury action against a defendant is two years after “the right of action accrues.” In other words, you have two years from the date of your injury to file your lawsuit. If you fail to file a claim before that period of time expires, you won’t be allowed to pursue damages at all.
Get Help from an Experienced Athens Slip and Fall Attorney
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, you may still be in shock about the injuries and damages you have accrued. You may also be confused about what your rights are. When you call our experienced Athens slip and fall lawyers at Adamson & Cleveland, LLC, we will work with you to build your case and pursue the compensation that you deserve. Connect with us today for your free consultation.