If you fell and hurt yourself in a store, restaurant, apartment complex, public space, or even a private home, the owner could be responsible for paying you damages. A property owner must keep their premises reasonably safe for visitors, or they are liable to pay compensation to an injured person.
Do not try to handle this personal injury claim alone. A Winter Garden slip and fall lawyer could evaluate the circumstances of your injury and advise you of your legal options.
Florida follows the traditional liability rule that a property owner owes the highest duty of care to someone who comes onto their premises by invitation to conduct business. This concept applies to anyone whose property is open to the public, such as stores, malls, office buildings, parking lots, and other facilities. The owners must keep the premises reasonably safe for visitors, conduct periodic inspections for hidden hazards, and repair any dangerous conditions as quickly as possible.
Homeowners who invite people onto their property for social or other purposes also have a duty to their visitors. They have no official obligation to inspect their property for the visitor’s benefit but they must warn of hidden hazards. A homeowner has no duty to repair a hazard to protect a visitor.
Property owners are not obligated to protect trespassers from injury, except in specific circumstances if the trespasser is a child. When a property contains an artificial feature that might attract a child, such as a pool, play set, shed, treehouse, or sandpit, the property owner must take steps to prevent trespassing children from gaining access to it. A person should consult a Winter Garden attorney if they slipped and fell while on someone else’s property and suffered injury.
A person’s damages are the losses they suffered due to being injured. Damages include both out-of-pocket costs and the intangible losses an injury causes. A negligent property owner is responsible for paying the damages of anyone who fell and got hurt on their premises.
People who sustain relatively minor injuries might feel their damages are negligible, especially if health insurance pays their medical bills. However, even a minor injury could have significant financial and emotional consequences, including:
An injured person might experience other losses that could be compensated through damages, depending on the circumstances.
Sometimes a fall causes a severe injury like a complex fracture, traumatic brain injury, or spinal cord injury. Damages in these cases could pay for physical rehabilitation, mental health treatment, occupational therapy, at-home nursing or personal care support, equipment such as a wheelchair, and other costs of living with a severe injury. A Winter Garden attorney could help an injured person calculate the full extent of their losses due to the slip and fall.
When an adult is injured in a fall, they have four years from the accident date to file a lawsuit against the property owner. When someone under 18 gets hurt in a fall, Florida Statutes § 95.051 allows the child seven years to bring a lawsuit. However, in most cases, it is advantageous for a parent to bring suit on the child’s behalf.
Falls could happen on government property like a court building, City Hall, or a public school. When the government has potential liability for an injury, special time limits apply. The injured person must present written notice of the claim to the allegedly responsible agency or local government within three years of the incident.
If an injured person does not bring a lawsuit within the statutory time or fails to provide notice to a potentially liable government agency, the tardiness defeats the claim.
Slip and fall claims can seem simple but are often complicated. It takes an experienced negligence attorney to get the best result. A Winter Garden slip and fall lawyer could put their legal knowledge and keen negotiating skills to work for you. Call us as soon as possible after your injury.
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