Pittston Slip & Fall Lawyer
In Pennsylvania, property owners are required to use a certain amount of care to ensure that their premises are safe for visitors. Those who are injured as a result of a property owner’s failure to do so can hold that individual liable for related damages, which could include compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Unfortunately, filing this type of claim can be difficult, so if you were injured while on someone else’s property, it is important to speak with an experienced Pittston slip & fall lawyer who can explain your legal options before you proceed with your case.
Elements of a Slip and Fall Claim
A property owner whose failure to properly maintain his or her premises results in a visitor’s injury can be held liable for related losses, but only if the injured party can prove that the property owner:
- Created the danger that caused the injury;
- Knew about the hazard, but failed to address it; or
- Should have known about the hazard, but failed to inspect the property.
In fulfilling these elements, plaintiffs will need to provide evidence of the hazard or defect that caused them to fall, the most common of which include:
- Spilled liquids;
- The presence of snow or ice on sidewalks and in parking lots;
- Torn or loose carpeting;
- Improper lighting;
- A lack of stair rails;
- Uneven flooring;
- Inadequate security; and
- Cracked or uneven asphalt.
Pictures from the scene of the accident, as well as the injured party’s medical records often prove crucial in demonstrating that one of these kinds of hazards caused a plaintiff’s injuries. Reports of additional accidents in the same place, the testimony from eyewitnesses, and any video recordings from the scene of the accident can also play a critical role in proving fault.
Those who are injured while on someone else’s property only have a certain amount of time, known as a statute of limitations, to file a claim. In Pennsylvania, the statute of limitations for premises liability claims is two years, which means that injured plaintiffs only have a couple of years from the date of their accident to seek damages from the at-fault party in court.
Just as property owners are required to use reasonable care in maintaining their premises, visitors are required to use reasonable care while on that property. This includes being aware of obvious hazards and keeping an eye out for warning signs. Fortunately, even if a visitor did fail to take these steps, he or she is not necessarily out of luck when it comes to recovering damages in a slip and fall case. This is because Pennsylvania courts are required to comply with the legal theory of comparative negligence, which allows plaintiffs to recover damages for their losses even if they contributed in some way to their accident. Although his or her damages award will be reduced by the person’s degree of fault in causing the accident, an injured plaintiff will only ever be barred from recovery if a court finds that he or she was more than 50 percent at fault for the accident.
Schedule a Free Case Review
To learn more about filing a claim against the property owner who was responsible for your own injuries, please call the dedicated slip and fall lawyers at the O’Donnell Law Offices today. We can be reached at 570-821-5717 or via online message.