6 Key Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident
6 Key Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident
Each year, the total cost incurred from injuries reaches nearly $700 billion.
Many of these injuries result from accidents, and the ‘slip and fall’ category is one of the most common. There are steps you need to take after a slip and fall accident, though, and not everyone knows what to keep in mind.
Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.
1. Report The Incident
Before you take any further action, it’s essential that you report the incident to an owner, manager, etc. Not only will this establish a record of the date/time the incident occurred, but you’ll also have supporting evidence in the form of the other party’s assessment of the situation.
After you notify the appropriate party of what occurred, ask for a written statement from them that details the events for their point of view. Additionally, ask them to declare whether or not they are likely to possess any form of surveillance footage of the incident.
2. Take Photographs of The Scene
If you’re able to, taking photographs of the scene can drastically help build your case. This is especially true if the area where the accident occurred is not visibly dangerous.
For example, one of the most common causes of a slip and fall is a wet floor without a proper warning sign in place. Although your photographs may not readily convey that the floor is wet, they’ll be able to prove that there isn’t a sign in a location it should be in.
The same can be said for accidents that occur in different settings, such as a faulty handrail, broken plank on a set of wooden stairs, etc.
Keep in mind that you’ll also need to take pictures of any visible injuries as well as the exact location where you were injuries. Although it may seem morbid or grotesque, take photographs of any blood that’s present at the scene, as well.
3. Interview Witnesses
If anyone else was present at the time that your injury occurred, make your best effort to interview them before either of you leaves the scene.
In general, you’ll want to gather the following information from them:
- Their full name
- Their address/contact information
- What they saw from their point of view
- Anything else they’d like to add at their discretion
If you aren’t able to write this information down, you can make use of your phone’s audio recording feature to make a voice memo of your conversation with them. The same can be done with your phone’s video camera.
At the beginning of the recording, have the witnesses state their full name, the date/time, and then begin to explain what they saw.
Remember, though, to obtain their consent before using either of these options.
Repeat this process as many times as you can, even if there’s a large handful of people present at the scene. If the majority of witnesses’ accounts begin to sound the same, though, you’ll likely have all the evidence you need.
4. Seek Medical Treatment for Your Injuries
Many injuries aren’t readily apparent. In fact, some forms of head trauma can lead to a condition referred to as ‘Talk and Die Syndrome‘ due to how healthy the individual appears before succumbing to their injuries.
Even if you feel fine, it’s imperative that you get a proper evaluation by a medical professional. Not only will this uncover any medical issues you may have, but you’ll also establish further documentation of your injuries.
In fact, it’s often difficult to pursue legal compensation if you never sought medical treatment after the incident. The other party will likely argue that your injuries were so mild or benign that they caused you no form of distress or inconvenience.
5. Compile Documentation of The Accident Details
Before you move forward, you should organize all of the evidence that you’ve obtained. This means compiling a binder/folder, (either on your computer or as a physical medium) of:
- Photographs of the accident
- Witness accounts
- Written statements from an owner, manager, or appropriate party
- Medical records/statements from a medical professional
After you’ve put all this information together, you’ll need to make copies of it in some form. If most of your information is digital, you can email everything to yourself so that you’ll always have access to it by logging into your account.
If you prefer to keep a hard copy of everything, make at least one paper copy of everything. Then, secure it in a separate binder or folder and keep it in a safe location.
6. Contact a Legal Professional
Slip and fall incidents often give the victim plenty of opportunities to pursue compensation. Through the aid of a legal professional who specializes in this area of law, you’ll be able to get what you deserve.
With all the evidence you’ve already gathered, you’ll have the added benefit of having your case move forward as quickly as possible. This will help you handle any medical debt you may have accrued before it begins to impact your personal finances.
Handling a Slip and Fall Accident Can Seem Difficult
But it doesn’t have to be.
With the above information about properly dealing with a slip and fall accident in mind, you’ll be well on your way to getting on the road to recovery as quickly as possible.
Want to learn more about how we can help? Feel free to get in touch with us today to see what we can do.