Premises Liability Attorney and Slip and Fall Lawyer Denver
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What To Do If Injured In a Premises Liability or Slip & Fall Accident
After a slip and fall injury, first, get to safety and make sure there is no additional danger. Then call 911. Calling 911 will alert first responders to your location so that injured accident victims can receive medical treatment. Let them know how the slip and fall accident happened.
Seek Medical Attention
It is very important to seek medical attention after a slip and fall accident to determine if you have been hurt. Oftentimes, you won’t know how badly you have been hurt until hours or days after your slip and fall incident.
Document the Accident
Immediately after a premises liability or slip and fall accident, if you are able, document and gather general accident information. Fill out an incident report and gather contact information for any witnesses. If there are video cameras, ask for footage. Take pictures of the scene of the accident and what caused the slip and fall. Important evidence can disappear quickly.
Call a Premises Liability Attorney or Slip and Fall Lawyer in Denver
As soon as you are able, contact a Denver slip and fall lawyer. Valuable evidence can be lost or destroyed if you don’t act quickly. In some cases, experts will be needed to investigate the incident. A premises liability attorney will help guide you through this process and make sure important evidence is preserved.
Work with a Colorado premises liability attorney you can trust.
Eisenstein Law is devoted to our premises liability and slip and fall clients. We will make sure your rights are protected every step of the way. Our lawyers will guide you through medical issues and the insurance claims process. If a settlement is not possible, we are ready to take your case to trial. Don’t settle for less, contact one of the best slip and fall lawyers in Denver today.
Frequently Asked Slip and Fall Accident Questions
What is a premises liability accident?
The Colorado Premises Liability Act C.R.S. § 13-21-115 Actions against landowners (PLA) applies to almost all causes of action against landowners for injuries occurring on their land. A “landowner” means both a person or company that is in possession of real property, a person legally responsible for the condition of real property, or a person responsible for the activities conducted there or the circumstances existing on the property. The premises liability act subsumes almost all other causes of action. In other words, if you have been injured on the real property of another, because of a condition, activity, or circumstance existing on that property, you can only recover against a landowner of that property under the PLA. You generally cannot recover for your injuries under a theory of negligence. The broad applicability of this law makes it important to contact a Denver lawyer who is experienced with slip and falls and premises liability.
The Premises Liability Act creates three categories of potential slip and fall claimants and defines the duties a landowner owes to each. The first category is called an “invitee.” Under the PLA, an invitee is essentially someone who is on the landowner’s property to conduct a business transaction with the landowner or who has entered or remained on the land because there is an express or implied invitation for them to be there. The second category is a “licensee.” A licensee is someone who is on the real property with the permission of the landowner, but is there solely for their own benefit, or is a social guest of the landowner. The last category is a “trespasser.” As the name suggests, a trespasser is someone who is there without the landowner’s consent. A landowner owes different duties to each of these three categories of premises liability or slip and fall or trip and fall victims.
The highest duty a landowner has is to an invitee. A landowner has to protect invitees against dangers on the property of which the landowner actually knew or should have known. An example of this would be an apartment complex owner or manager who would have a duty to protect people who lived at the apartment complex from rusty broken staircases or icy sidewalks. A licensee, on the other hand, can only recover for damages caused by a landowner’s unreasonable failure to exercise care with respect to dangers the landowner created and actually knew about or dangers that are not normally on a property that the landowner knew about. A landowner’s duty to trespassers is almost non-existent. A trespasser can only recover damages from a landowner for a danger on the property that was willfully or deliberately caused by the landowner. However, exceptions apply to all of these categories. E.g., a landowner may have liability to an injured child trespasser for creating an “attractive nuisance.”
What is a slip and fall accident?
Slip and fall accidents are serious safety issues. Every year in the United States, all types of fall injuries cause over 8 million hospital emergency room visits. Falls, in general, are the leading cause of ER visits. Slip and falls accidents represent over 1 million of those visits. Half of all accidental deaths in the home are caused by a fall, and most fall injuries occur at ground level, not from an elevation. Around 5% of all falls result in fractures. Fall accidents account for 87% of fractures in the population of people over the age of 65 and are the second leading cause of spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injury symptoms.
The dangers of slip and fall accidents are especially pronounced in older populations. Every year, 33% of people over the age of 65 will experience a fall. That number goes up to 60% for residents of nursing homes. In fact, for people aged 65-84, falls are the second leading cause of injury-related death. After the age of 85, falls become the leading cause of injury-related death. Even non-fatal slip and fall accidents can seriously impact a person’s quality of life. Half of the elderly adults hospitalized for hip fractures cannot return home or live independently following their injury.
Slip and fall accidents aren’t isolated to the elderly. They happen to young and healthy individuals as well. Slip and fall accidents have many causes. A prevalence of slick floors, a lack of warning signs, failure to use precautionary measures, and a lack of safety training, policies, and awareness means that slip and fall injuries can happen to anyone.
What should I do if I’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident?
If you have been injured in a slip and fall or a trip and fall accident the first thing to do is take care of yourself. If you require immediate medical attention, make sure to request it first. Next, it is very important to properly document the condition of the property where the slip and fall accident occurred. Take pictures or videos of the area where you slipped and fell. Include any warning signs, lighting, precautionary devices, etc. If there were no warning signs, take pictures that clearly show the lack of warning signs or safety devices. If you slipped and fell on snow or ice, take pictures that show the condition of the walkway where your accident occurred. Make sure you can tell that there is no ice melt or sand from your pictures. Pictures or videos can be critical to your slip and fall or trip and fall accident case because conditions can change so quickly from the time of your injury to the time a proper investigation is conducted. Spills can dry up. Trip hazards can be corrected. Warning signs can be placed down. Ice can melt. Unfortunately, negligent property owners and insurance companies are not above trying to correct or hide the problems afterward and then claim that proper safety measures were present at the time of your slip and fall injuries. That is why it is so important to document the scene as accurately and thoroughly as possible following a slip and fall injury.
Next, try to complete a slip and fall accident report if you are able. Make sure that the property owner or manager where your slip and fall accident occurred is aware that you were injured. Record their name and contact information so that you can follow up with them at a later date. Ask them if any video exists of the slip and fall accident, and, if so, how you can obtain a copy. Make sure to ask them not to overwrite or delete any CCTV or surveillance footage that might have recorded your slip and fall accident. If there are any witnesses to your slip and fall or trip and fall accident, find out their names and their contact information so you can speak with them later if necessary.
Who is responsible for a premise liability or slip and fall accident?
Under Colorado’s Premises Liability Act, C.R.S. § 13-21-115 Actions against landowners (PLA) “landowners” are responsible for injuries occurring on their property. For purposes of analyzing liability for slip and fall accidents and injuries under the PLA, a “landowner” means both a person or company that is in possession of the real property and a person legally responsible for the condition of real property or the activities conducted there or the circumstances existing on the property. It is possible to have more than one landowner under the PLA. E.g., both the owner of a property and a snow and ice removal company could both be considered “landowners” for injuries on a property because of hazardous ice formation.
The premises liability act subsumes almost all other causes of action. In other words, if you have been injured on the real property of another, because of a condition, activity, or circumstance existing on that property, you can only recover against a landowner of that property under the PLA. You cannot recover from your slip and fall accident injuries under a theory of negligence.
What’s my premises liability or slip and fall accident worth?
Our Colorado premises liability attorneys will explain how to determine the value of your case. If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident in Colorado you are generally entitled to three categories of damages or compensation. First, you are entitled to economic damages. This category includes your medical bills and expenses for your injuries that were caused by the slip and fall or premises accident. Second, you are entitled to non-economic losses such as physical and mental pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. Third, the law allows you to recover for any physical impairment or disfigurement that was caused by the slip and fall accident. A skilled slip and fall lawyer in Denver can help you recover the maximum amounts allowed by the law. You are entitled to the amounts billed for your medical care, not the amounts that were paid. Also, your Colorado personal injury attorney can effectively frame arguments to help you maximize the arguments for non-economic damages and physical impairment.
Do I still have a case if I was partially responsible for my fall?
You might still have a case. Colorado applies pro-rata, or comparative, fault when more than one person is responsible for a slip and fall accident. A jury can assign a percentage of fault to different parties, with the total equaling 100%. However, in Colorado, if you are determined to be 50% or more at fault, you will not be able to recover damages for your injuries. A Denver slip and fall attorney can help you analyze any comparative fault in your case and discuss potential outcomes of pursuing your premises liability case.
Should I talk to insurance after a slip and fall accident?
No. You should not talk to an insurance company or sign any documents after being injured in a slip and fall accident before you talk to a Denver attorney. From sending low settlement checks to demanding blanket authorizations for all of your protected medical records, the insurance companies know what they are doing. Insurance companies try to minimize the amount of money they have to pay you for the actions of their negligent insureds who caused your injuries. Make sure you talk to a slip and fall lawyer in Denver before talking to the insurance company.
Should I go to the doctor after a slip and fall accident?
Yes. You should go to a doctor to make sure you haven’t been seriously hurt in a slip and fall or premises liability accident. Not seeking medical care, gaps in between treatments, or not following up with recommended care, when you claim you are still injured can be very damaging to your case. Defense attorneys will argue that if you were truly hurt, you would have continued to seek medical care. Always continue to treat if your doctors have recommended it. Make sure you tell your doctor the specifics of your pain and symptoms. You should talk about the location, the duration and frequency, and what makes it better or worse. You should also be sure to discuss pain that you cannot see such as shooting, stabbing, burning pains, numbness, or tingling. Memory and thinking issues, irritability, and sleep disturbances should also be reported to your doctor. Oftentimes, cognitive issues and minor brain injuries are overlooked by emergency room doctors and primary care physicians.
Can a premises liability attorney or slip and fall lawyer help me?
Your Denver slip and fall lawyer will take steps to preserve important evidence that can help maximize your recovery and prove the elements of your case. Videos and incident reports can disappear, and witness information can be lost. A slip and fall injury lawyer will send out a preservation letter to make sure the at-fault party preserves any important information. If they fail to do so, they may be subject to an adverse instruction if the slip and fall case goes to trial. That is when a judge instructs the jury that they can presume the evidence would have been favorable to your claims if it had been preserved.
The evolution of Colorado’s Premises Liability Act is a confusing web of case law that many attorneys and judges are unable to agree on. If you have been injured in a slip and fall, trip and fall, or on the real property of another, contact a slip and fall lawyer in Denver today to protect your rights. Slip and fall accidents are common and can cause serious injuries. In most cases, they could have been prevented with common sense and a little caution. We can reduce the injuries caused by slip and fall accidents and make our communities safer by holding property owners accountable for their actions. Don’t settle for less, call Eisenstein Law today for a free slip and fall case evaluation.
Find Your Denver Slip and Fall Lawyer Through Eisenstein Law
How much can your case be worth? Eisenstein Law’s personal injury lawyers get compensation for those injured in a slip and fall accident. If you have been injured while on another person’s property as a result of the property owner’s negligence, then our premises liability attorneys can get you the settlement you deserve. Eisenstein Law offers legal services for those also involved in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, wrongful death cases, and more.