Slip and fall accidents happen unexpectedly — and when they do, serious injuries can be sustained. If you were hurt in a slip and fall on someone else’s property as a result of their negligence, you may be entitled to compensation by filing a personal injury action. However, it’s essential to avoid making certain common mistakes that can impact the outcome of your case.
Mistake #1: Failing to Obtain Evidence at the Scene
One of the most important things to do in a slip and fall case is to document it by collecting evidence at the scene of the accident. If possible, you should take photos of the hazardous condition that caused the accident and gather the names of witnesses who saw the slip and fall occur. Evidence can also include personal property or clothing that was damaged in the accident. You should also report the accident to management or the property owner and file an incident report — be sure to retain a copy for yourself.
Mistake #2: Speaking with the Insurance Company
After a slip and fall accident, the defendant’s insurance company will likely contact you and try to obtain a recorded statement. Although insurance companies can provide you with monetary recovery after you’ve been injured on the insured’s property, adjusters will try to find any reason to deny or reduce your compensation. Critically, an insurance company is not permitted to speak directly with you once you are represented by an attorney.
Mistake #3: Failing to Seek Medical Attention
Getting the medical help you need after a slip and fall isn’t only vital for your health. It’s also crucial to building your personal injury claim. Not only does the medical documentation in your case link the accident to your injuries, but it also demonstrates the extent of the injuries sustained — and helps prove your entitlement to monetary recovery.
Mistake #4: Waiting Too Long to File a Lawsuit
If you’ve incurred economic and non-economic losses in a slip and fall accident caused by another party’s negligence, don’t wait too long to file a lawsuit. There are specific statutes of limitation in place that can forever bar you from bringing a claim if the deadlines are not met. The statute of limitations for a personal injury action in New York is typically three years from the date of the accident. However, it is much shorter if the City of New York or one of its agencies should be named as a party in the lawsuit. In cases where the slip and fall occurred on city property, a victim must file a Notice of Claim within 90 days and file a lawsuit within one year and 90 days.
Mistake #5: Handling Your Case on Your Own
One of the biggest mistakes slip and fall victims can make is attempting to handle their case by themselves. Not only can the personal injury lawsuit process be confusing and overwhelming, but the laws concerning negligence are highly nuanced. It’s imperative to work with an experienced personal injury attorney who knows how to evaluate your injuries, negotiate a settlement with the insurance company, and maximize your compensation.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you’ve been in a slip and fall accident caused by someone else’s carelessness, recklessness, or negligence, a knowledgeable personal injury attorney can help to secure the compensation you deserve. The attorneys at the Dearie Law Firm, P.C. are aggressive negotiators and skillful litigators who are dedicated to ensuring every client obtains the monetary recovery to which they are entitled.
The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has convenient office locations in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, as well as mobile locations serving Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester County, Rockland County, Nassau County, and Suffolk County. Contact us today for a consultation.