The Florida Slip and Fall Guide was created by McKenzie Law Firm to help residents obtain the financial compensation they deserve after suffering from another’s negligence.
Slipping or tripping typically is not something that requires medical attention. Usually you can get up, brush off the embarrassment, and move on. However, if you have found your way to this page, you most likely have been seriously hurt in a slip and fall or a trip and fall accident. Unfortunately, you can get severely injured in a slip and fall and you may require emergency medical attention. We are sorry that you have to go through this, but we are here to help you. In a slip and fall, you deserve the best result. We will help you get the most compensation possible from the liable party’s insurance company.
Florida Slip and Fall Statute of Limitations
A successful slip and fall claim is one that is filed on time. You are going to be confined by the statute of limitations given to you by the state of Florida. You are permitted four years starting from the date of the accident in which you can bring your claim or settle it in civil court. It is very important that you are aware of your statute of limitations because, if you miss this deadline, you will be barred from receiving compensation. The best thing that you can do is hire a Florida slip and fall lawyer right away. Four years, in terms of a lawsuit, is not really a long time. As much as we do our best to move things along, lawsuits can take time, and we do not want you to be pressed for time to build a strong case because you waited to hire a lawyer. The sooner you get representation, the better off you will be down the road.
How Florida Slip and Fall Compensation Works
When you are seeking compensation, it is important to understand what exactly you will be compensated for. There are several factors that go into what you can be compensated for. You will receive past and future medical expenses, past and future lost wages, pain and suffering, and damages. You may get compensation for damages if you, for instance, fell with your phone and it broke. When there is a dollar amount attached to your case, that may be affected by the role you played in causing the accident. Typically with a slip and fall, you injured yourself because there was something hazardous about the property that you were on, but sometimes the blame is partially on the person who got hurt. Perhaps they were texting and could have seen the tripping or slipping hazard. If you are partially at fault, you will have a reduced award. The only way you will be barred from getting a compensation award is if you are 100 percent to blame for your accident. Otherwise, your award will be reduced by the percent of fault that you were found responsible for.
Common Types of Injuries in a Slip and Fall Accident
As mentioned, slip and falls can cause severe injuries. We often see broken bones and fractured bones on people. There are also a lot of concussion, spine injuries, bruising, and neck injuries. If you have been injured in a slip and fall and it is an emergency like a broken bone, you need to get to an emergency room to get treated right away. Medical attention for any injury should happen as soon as possible for two reasons. Most importantly, you want your injuries looked at because your health is the most important thing. You also should get medical attention right away because you will be able to use your medical records as proof of your injuries that you can then show the liable party’s insurance company to demonstrate how severely injured you are and prove that they owe you compensation for these injuries.
Avoid Talking to Insurance Company
When you are hurt and get the insurance company involved for compensation, chances are they will be reaching out to you to get a recorded statement. You should never talk to them without first consulting with an attorney. Talking to the insurance company is a mistake. They will use what you say against you to reduce the amount of compensation that they owe you.
Frequently Asked Slip and Fall Questions
How Do I Pick the Right Attorney?
When searching for a slip and fall attorney, there are three things that you need to look for. The first thing is experience, then a focus on that area of law, and finally choosing a trial attorney. They all relate to each other, but they each have their own individual importance to them.
You need an attorney who knows how to handle premises liability/ slip and fall cases because there are very important key pieces of evidence and specialized law that applies to slip and fall cases in the state of Florida. If you have an attorney who has had experience in these cases, they will know exactly what to look for, how to look for it, and when to look for it which is immediately.
The second things is you need to ensure that they focus on premises liability. If they don’t focus on it, then they likely will not have the experience to handle the very specific things that go into these kinds of case.
Third, and one of the most important things you need to know, is whether the attorney that you’re choosing is a trial attorney. Does that attorney go to court? Does that attorney take cases to a judge, all the way to a verdict, or do they handle their own appeals? Those are things you want to know because if they take it to a trial, or as far as it can go, those attorneys are treated that much more seriously by the insurance companies because they know that that person is not going to give up and they know that person will go the distance for their clients. As a result, the offers that those kinds of attorneys get are better than offers given to attorneys who are not experts in this field and are not trial attorneys.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire an Attorney?
We work on what’s called a contingency fee basis, which means that you do not pay us any money unless you make a recovery. That recovery is determined by the circumstances of your case. The percentage we receive, if we make a recovery on your behalf, is governed by Florida law.
We work for our clients on the hope that we’ll make a recovery on their behalf, and we do our best to do so.
What Mistakes Should I Avoid Making?
There are specific rules, laws and regulations, and evidence requirements that are necessary for your case. You need to tell someone at the premises where you fell that you’ve been injured. If you have been involved in a slip and fall of some kind and haven’t yet made that notice, now is the best time to do that. If you didn’t do it right at the moment, they still may be able to get you the report done that they need to get done and pull any potential surveillance information that may exist there. Now is the best time to act if you have not.
Other common mistakes that we see made are people talking to the liable party’s insurance company or lawyers. You need to get an attorney to do that for you. If you’ve been injured and you’ve made that report, you need to get an attorney as quickly as you can so that you have an attorney acting on your behalf and acting in your best interest.
The second most common mistake has to do with medical treatment. Maybe someone did not go to the hospital quick enough. They don’t follow up with treatment that the doctor has prescribed. They don’t go through the surgery that they need. You’re harming your future self by not getting the treatment that you need to get right now. You need to take care of yourself so that you can be in the best shape possible for the rest of your life, so that you can be there for your family, have your job, and do the things you need to do to have a successful a life as possible.
How Much is My Case Worth?
There are a host of things that come into play to determine what the value of your case is. That’s all governed by law we call Damages Law. Damages Law says that you’re entitled to make a recovery for your injuries, and those injuries are both physical injuries as well as mental and emotional injuries. The law, over time, has outlined exactly what those are and what’s recoverable.
Our job as lawyers is to ask you all the questions necessary to determine in what way your life has been affected and to also examine the evidence that exists, such as your medical records and medical bills, and to follow you along in your course of medical treatment to come up with a proper valuation of what your claim is. Once we have all of that evidence and information in hand, which usually takes several months, if not a year to get that information, we will make a valuation of your claim and discuss that value with you. At that point in time, we can move forward with your case.
Can I Give a Recorded Statement?
You need to contact an attorney and speak with an attorney before speaking with anyone from the grocery store chain or from the insurance company who represents them. The reason is twofold. Number one, you need someone on your side advocating for you who has the knowledge and experience of what those people are trying to do when they’re reaching out to contact you. Number two, the reason you don’t need to speak to them, is because we know that those people who are contacting you are trying to get that case to go away. What that means is they are trying to minimize the amount of money or the amount of time they’re going to have to spend getting your case resolved so that you will not receive fair and just compensation for the injuries and the particular circumstances of your case.
How Long Will This Case Take?
Every case, like every human being, is an individual. You have injuries that are unique to you. Those injuries are going to require different kinds of treatment based on you and your particular ability to recover or your ability to go forward with the daily activities that you need to go through with. There are just too many variable factors for us to be able to tell you when your case is going to come to a resolution.
There’s also a host of people we have to rely on for a case to come to a resolution. Before a trial starts or a case is filed, we have to wonder if the insurance adjuster is going to resolve the case. If it has to go to court and trial, then we have to worry about what the judge is going to do. What is the jury going to do? What is an appellate court going to do? There are too many factors that can come into play for any attorney to reasonably tell a person when their case is going to get resolved.
There are too many individualized issues about your injuries and your case that are particular to you and your circumstances. We can’t tell you when the case is going to end. What we can tell you is that our firm will do its best to run your case as efficiently as possible and get you the quickest result we can, so long as it’s the best result for you.
Call Our Office Today for a Free Consultation
If you have been seriously hurt in a slip and fall accident and you want dedicated and supportive representation, please do not hesitate to call our Florida slip and fall lawyer to set up a free initial case review. We will get to work right away for you and fight to get you the most compensation possible. You are a priority to us and we will do everything we can to get you a result that is fair. It is important that you hire the right lawyer to get the best outcome.