Can A Minneapolis Slip and Fall Attorney Help You?
You have slipped or tripped and fallen at a business establishment because of a dangerous condition on the business owner’s property and sustained a serious injury. Do you have a valid legal claim against the business owner? Do you need to retain a Minneapolis slip and fall attorney? Perhaps you do. But if you do not do the things I have listed below, it is doubtful that I or any other lawyer will be able to help you successfully bring a claim. Some of the instructions below may seem like common sense. That said, I will tell you that I have talked to numerous potential clients that I could not help because they neglected to do these things. In short, ignore these instructions at your own risk.
Go to the business owner immediately and tell the owner that you have fallen on their property. Explain to them the cause of the fall and that you were injured. Memorialize this conversation in writing. If you wait days or even weeks to do this, the chances of you being able to recover for your injury decrease significantly. I have had many potential clients call me and ask me to help them with a slip and fall claim and I had to turn them down because they never notified the business owner that they fell. I have to turn down these cases because the longer it takes for you to tell the business owner that you fell on their property, the more difficult it becomes for me to prove legally that the dangerous condition on the business owner’s property caused your injury. What if you go to a business that you often frequent and almost fall because of a dangerous condition on the property but you are not injured? Even under these circumstances, you should tell the business owner that you almost fell and memorialize it in writing. This way the business owner has notice, in writing, that there is a dangerous condition on their property that they need to fix. After this, if you or someone else goes to the property and falls, the business owner cannot argue a lack of notice.
Without independent evidence that you fell and of the dangerous condition that caused you to fall- you do not have a viable slip and fall claim. Again, I have had to turn down many potential clients because there was no independent evidence that they fell or of what caused them to fall. Take pictures of the area where you fell. Better yet, take video footage of the area where you fell with your phone. Even better, if you suspect that you are seriously injured because of the fall, call 911 so that an officer can come to the scene and document his or her observations of the fall scene in a report. If there were witnesses to the fall, make sure that you get these witnesses contact information immediately so that you and your attorney can obtain their statements later. Our civil just system allows parties to recover for their injuries from a slip and fall if they can provide enough evidence showing that it is 50 percent or more likely that a business owner maintained a dangerous condition on their property that the business owner knew about that caused the fall. Simply put, your version of the fall, standing alone, is not nearly enough to satisfy this legal burden.
If you were injured because of the fall: go to the hospital or urgent care immediately. Even if you are unsure if you were injured, go to the hospital or urgent care immediately so that even your suspected injury is documented on a medical record. Many people have come to me after a slip or trip and fall telling me that some part of their body was injured and after I ask them whether they went to the doctor, they reply no. My unfortunate response to them is: “I’m sorry but I cannot help you.” As personal injury lawyers, a basic rule of thumb that we follow is that if there is not a medical record documenting the injury, for legal purposes, the injury does not exist. Put another way, if it takes you weeks or months to see a doctor after you fell and injured yourself, for legal purposes, the injury either does not exist or was caused by something other than the fall. I cannot emphasize this enough: after the fall, if you are injured or think you may be injured, go to the hospital or urgent care immediately.
I am a Minneapolis slip and fall attorney and would like to help you if you have fallen and are seriously injured because of a dangerous condition on a business owner’s property. In the unfortunate event that this is you, please contact our law firm at 763-438-3032.