Chattanooga Valley Slip and Fall Injury Lawyer
HS Law represents victims in Chattanooga Valley and the Greater Atlanta area who have been injured in a Slip and Fall incident.
Hazardous conditions on another’s property can become very dangerous to unsuspecting people. Georgia has specific laws for property owners in place that are to prevent slip and fall accidents. If you have been injured by slipping and falling on any property that isn’t your own, you may be eligible for a lawsuit claim. HS Law can help you gain compensation for medical costs and lost wages. Call us at 404-400-1175 for a free consultation to address your case.
What to do after a slip and fall accident
If you are injured after falling on someone else’s property, there are several things you need to do to reasonably pursue a claim. After taking these steps, call HS Law to get started on your free consultation.
Ask for Help
It is important that you are helped up and immediately assessed for medical issues following a fall. Trying to get up and walk away on your own could do more harm than good in the long run. It is recommended that you get assessed by a medical professional and to document the incident to help show that your injuries were a direct result of your fall.
It is crucial to gather certain documentation before the scene of the fall is fixed or removed.
Information to gather following a slip and fall
- Note where and when the incident took place. If the owner of the property is there, get their information too.
- Write down what happened and include specific details. Writing it down will help in case details are forgotten down the road.
- Get the contact information for any witnesses and people that helped, including names and telephone numbers. If you talked to an employee of the company, get their contact information too.
- Take pictures of the area that the incident happened, especially if there was a specific thing that caused you to fall. It is important to do this before the company fixes or removes the thing that caused you to fall.
File an Accident Report
Immediately report your fall to whoever oversees the area of the incident. While making sure that someone who is affiliated with the company knows about the incident, it is very important that you remember a few things.
Tips for interacting with property owners
- Do not give any recorded statements.
- Do not admit fault.
- Record the name and contact information of the employee that you spoke with.
- Do not sign anything before, after, or during the process of filing a report.
Call HS Law as Soon as Possible
Fighting a slip and fall injury case is complicated and has many twists and turns to it. By allowing us to help, we will take the necessary steps in evaluating the case and communicating with those involved, so that you don’t have to.
Georgia law will not allow injury victims to present evidence in a trial that a company fixed or repaired a dangerous condition (the legal term for this is subsequent remedial measures).
To help clients fight big insurance companies that cover companies, and to prevent evidence from disappearing, HS Law will send a preservation of evidence letter to prevent the destruction of evidence. This is a letter that compels a business owner to save evidence related to your injury.
If the company does not save the evidence after receiving this letter, the judge will tell the jury to assume the evidence was not favorable to the company. At HS Law, we send a preservation of evidence letter on every premises liability case we handle.
Your time to file a claim may be running out. Some cases require an Ante Litem notice to be sent within six months from the date that you were injured. Please give us a call at 404-400-1175 for a free consultation to address your specific case before it’s too late.
There is a legal doctrine in place that holds property owners reliable for making sure their premises are safe, called “premises liability”. This includes proper inspections, repairs on known hazards, and a proper warning of existing threats to visitors. If an accident happens and they fail to maintain their space, they will be held liable for the damages of the victim.
Unfortunately, many prospective clients that call other injury law firms never have their potential cases evaluated by attorneys. Many other personal injury law firms rely on “Case Managers” or “Intake Specialists” to evaluate potential cases. This is another way of saying that an attorney is not evaluating your case. Georgia premises liability law is very complex and non-lawyers frequently miss important information when evaluating potential new cases. Do not rely on advice from a non-lawyer. Your potential case deserves attention from a licensed and experienced slip and fall injury lawyer like those at HS Law.
Open and Obvious
If you suffer an injury on someone else’s property in Georgia, there are many potential ways an insurance company can defend your case. “Open and Obvious” is one of the defenses used by insurance companies handling premises liability cases. Basically, this defense states that if the injured person easily could have seen the hazardous condition (often something spilled or dropped on the floor), the store owner is not legally obligated to pay the injured victim.
Insurance company adjusters frequently deny claims by using this legal defense without examining all the facts. For example, if you told the insurance adjuster that the puddle of liquid that caused your fall was massive but did not go into more detail, the insurance adjuster may deny your claim based on that fact alone.
Some other important facts to know before denying this type of claim include not only the size of the spill but also what color the flooring was and what color the liquid was that spilled. Was the liquid clear? Was the floor white? If so, the spilled liquid may not be open and obvious despite the fact that there was a lot of it on the floor. The bottom line is that slip and fall cases require thorough legal evaluation by experienced lawyers. The lawyers at HS Law are happy to talk with you regarding your potential claim, even if it has been denied by an insurance adjuster.
SLIP AND FALL INJURIES: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
I was asked to give a recorded statement after a slip and fall injury - should I do it?
Not without a lawyer present. This tip is especially true for premises liability cases. These cases are won or lost on what most non-lawyers would consider unimportant facts. You cannot help your case by giving a recorded statement, but you can certainly hurt it. Even if you think you have a slam dunk case, insurance companies will gather harmful information to later be used against you.
Remember that claims adjusters receive special training to ask questions designed to benefit the insurance company and harm your case. Also, recorded statements can be used to impeach your testimony if you have to file a lawsuit.
Do I have a valid case if I slipped and fell at a friend's home?
Maybe. The law is different if you are a social guest at someone’s home. What could result in a successful claim against a store owner may not always result in you winning case against an individual homeowner. Also, keep in mind that HS Law rarely ever tries to recover directly from a person.
If your friend or acquaintance owns a home, their home will usually be insured under a homeowner’s insurance policy. This insurance policy will pay for your damages if a slip and fall injury lawyer at HS Law can prove that you have a claim under Georgia law. In other words, you won’t be collecting money from your friend.
Do I have a valid case if I slipped and fell while trespassing?
Probably not. However, there are circumstances where you (or your child) may have a case. Under Georgia law, if you are trespassing, the owner of the land or the building where you are injured is typically responsible only for your injuries if that owner intentionally caused your injuries.
There is one big exception. It is called the attractive nuisance doctrine. This applies to children that enter another person’s property. We typically see this doctrine apply when (1) an owner has a swimming pool that is not enclosed and a child drowns or (2) the owner has a trampoline and a child is injured.
I was injured on state, county, city, or other government property. Should I talk to a slip and fall injury lawyer?
If you are injured on government property you might have a case. These cases are often the most complex of all premises liability cases. In fact, some personal injury law firms refuse to consider these because of the time demands and requirements imposed on lawyers and injury victims.
Before an injured person can file a lawsuit against a city, county, state, or other government entity, an Ante Litem notice must be filed. Basically, this is a letter that an injured party or their attorney must send to certain people, agencies, and groups of people detailing facts, law, and damages.
If an Ante Litem notice is not sent within the timeframe provided under Georgia law, your potential case will be denied. Also, if an Ante Litem notice does not exactly comply with Georgia law, your claim will be denied. You may have as little as six months to send an Ante Litem notice. If you were injured on any government property, call HS Law immediately.
I was attacked or robbed on someone’s property. Should I talk to a slip and fall injury lawyer?
It depends on the specific facts. If you were attacked and suffered injuries (including sexual assault), the lawyers at HS Law would like to speak with you to determine if you have a case. Some of the important factors to consider include prior attacks or assaults at or near the location where you were attacked, the level of security provided, and similar police investigations conducted before your incident.
My child was injured at a daycare. May I bring a case for my child?
Yes. The law in Georgia allows parents to bring claims on behalf of their children (legally referred to as minors). Keep in mind that in Georgia a minor is defined as anyone under the age of 18 years.
Bright from the Start, also known as the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning, is the agency that will investigate any report regarding a licensing violation at a childcare center, group daycare or family childcare home. It is often useful to file a complaint with this agency when your child is injured at a daycare facility. Additionally, the lawyers at HS Law can obtain valuable information regarding incidents at childcare facilities.