Many things could happen to your body when you slip and fall. You could suffer only the embarrassment of falling in front of friends and family. However, you could also experience a head injury, break a hip, sprain an ankle, or suffer some other injury that affects you significantly.
A slip and fall can affect people differently, depending on what happens to your body and other factors, such as age and general health. While some people might only suffer bruises or scratches from a slip and fall accident, others could become permanently disabled.
Injuries in Slip and Fall Accidents
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), slip and falls are the most common cause for traumatic brain injuries (TBI), a potentially devastating injury that can leave a sufferer with lifelong cognitive problems. TBI is just one of several injuries you could suffer in a slip and fall.
According to the CDC, more than 95 percent of all hip fractures happen due to falls. A hip fracture is a serious injury that can negatively impact a victim’s life in many ways. Especially in older persons, hip fractures can reduce independence and shorten lives. According to the Mayo Clinic, hip fractures typically require surgery, including partial or total replacement, and subsequent physiotherapy.
Spinal Cord Injuries
According to the Mayo Clinic, falls cause about 31 percent of all spinal cord injuries. Spinal cord injuries can cause permanent disability and nerve damage at and below the site of injury. They can limit an accident victim’s life and cause them to lose control of their bladder and bowels. A severe spinal injury might not immediately present symptoms, so seeking medical advice as soon as possible after an accident can prove essential.
Falls can also cause other injuries, including:
- Cuts and abrasions
- Soft tissue injuries to muscles and ligaments
- Dislocated joints
Depending on the severity of injuries suffered in a slip and fall, a patient might have to spend a considerable amount of time in the hospital for medical treatments and recovery. Hospitalization can cause financial hardship due to medical expenses and lost income from missing time at work.
After a Slip and Fall
If you suffered severe injuries in a slip and fall resulting from a property owner’s negligence, you could file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation.
You will want to take some steps to protect your rights after a slip and fall accident. Your best course of action starts with seeking medical attention as soon as possible. Besides ruling out any serious injuries, you can use your medical records as evidence if you later intend to sue. Some other steps you could take include:
- Taking pictures of the accident scene and the hazardous condition that caused your fall.
- Filing an accident report, if possible.
- Getting contact details or statements from eyewitnesses.
If you suffered severe injuries in a slip and fall, gathering evidence as soon as possible, before it “disappears,” can prove crucial to any future litigation. A slip and fall accident lawyer can help you compile evidence and interview witnesses.
If a property owner’s negligence caused your accident and injuries, you could recover compensation such as:
- Doctor and hospital bills
- Medical devices such as wheelchair and walker
- Over-the-counter and prescription drugs
- In-home help care
- Physical therapy
- Modifications to your home and car
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Permanent disability
If the property owner or their employee acted recklessly, they might have to pay punitive damages to you on top of any compensation.
Correctly calculating your damages is essential to secure a fair settlement that accounts for both present and projected future costs. A personal injury lawyer can help with assessing your damages.
Acting Quickly Can Be Important
Business and property owners should keep their premises in good repair and remove hazardous or dangerous conditions promptly. If something happens to your body when you slip and fall, you can hold the responsible party to account. However, if you wait too long, you might lose your chance to receive justice and compensation. Most states have deadlines, called statutes of limitations, for filing a personal injury claim.
You might find it in your best interest to speak with a slip and fall lawyer after an accident. An attorney can secure crucial evidence and start to build your case, leaving you free to recover from your injuries.
It is essential to keep in mind that the defendant’s insurance company might approach you after your accident, looking to settle your case quickly and cheaply. Rather than communicating with the insurance company, you can direct them to your lawyer, who can ensure that the company does not push a lowball settlement offer at you.
Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC, now at 800-959-1444 for a free evaluation of your slip and fall claim with a team member.