Jan 27th, 2023
Paulozzi Joseph

Slip and fall accidents can be incredibly dangerous. In Ohio, slip and fall legal claims involve the concept of negligence—the failure of a property owner to take reasonable care to keep their premises safe. If you’ve been injured due to a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, you may have a right to file a legal claim seeking compensation for damages. Here’s what you need to know about these types of claims in Ohio. 

The Basics of Negligence in Slip and Fall Accidents 

In order for your slip and fall claim to be successful, it must be proven that the property owner was negligent in their responsibility to maintain the safety of their premises. Generally speaking, this means that the property owner was aware of the hazard that caused your accident, or should have reasonably been aware, but failed to do anything about it. For example, if a spilled drink is left on the floor for too long without being cleaned up or if wet paint isn’t adequately marked as slippery, then this could potentially make the property owner liable for any resulting injuries suffered by guests or customers. 

It is important to note that this type of claim does not include circumstances out of the owner’s control such as weather conditions or acts of God. In order to pursue a slip and fall claim in Ohio it is suggested that those who have experienced such an incident consult with an experienced lawyer who can navigate all aspects of the case, including any potential liability issues.

What Damages Can I Recover? 

If your claim is successful, you may be entitled to recover damages related to your medical expenses (including hospital bills, doctor visits, prescription costs), lost wages due to missed work as a result of your injury, as well as pain and suffering. Additionally, if you are able to prove that the property owner acted with malicious intent or gross negligence—such as deliberately ignoring unsafe conditions—you may also be able to seek punitive damages from them. An experienced attorney can help you determine which types of damages are available in your case. 

Who is Responsible if You Fall?

You are walking in a supermarket or restaurant and the floor beneath you is wet causing you to slip and fall to the floor. You are hurt physically and emotionally embarrassed. Are you legally entitled to compensation? The owners of the property are responsible for keeping their premises safe and maintaining a hazard-free environment. They may have neglected this responsibility and you suffered an injury as a result. Now you or a loved one face the prospect of expensive medical care possibly including recurring treatments and rehabilitation. Do not let the negligent property owner avoid compensating you for your injuries and suffering.

Non-commercial Slip and Fall Situations

It is important that we recognize the importance of icy sidewalks in our everyday lives. Slick and hazardous conditions can quickly arise during cold winter months, making it crucial to take necessary precautions. Higher temperatures tend to create ice as water vapor condenses and then freezes on surfaces, so even with proper maintenance, this can be a common issue facing many pedestrian pathways. 

The danger of icy sidewalks is obvious – no one wants to slip, fall, or incur an injury while walking to their destination! It’s important to stay aware of changing temperature patterns and be prepared when it comes time for de-icing surfaces. Understanding better why these icy winter days come about will help us learn how to best combat them in future seasons.

Slip & Fall Injuries Happen Numerous Ways

Residential vs Workplace Claims

Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere, including in a residential or workplace setting. While both scenarios involve the negligence of another person or entity, there are differences between filing a legal claim for a slip and fall accident in one versus the other. 

In residential settings, often facilities that are either owned or managed by third-parties, such as apartment buildings or condominiums, negligence needs to be proven in order for the homeowner to win their case. In contrast, when it comes to workplace slip and fall claims, special health and safety laws exist for employee protection so companies must adhere to these regulations to be safe from liability. If a worker is injured due to the employer’s failure to abide by the law regarding workplace safety, they may have grounds for a successful legal claim.

Other examples include:

  • Falls from porches or balconies due to poor structure or lack of maintenance
  • Slip and fall on a wet floor in businesses
  • Trip and fall on broken concrete stairs or ramp
  • Trip and fall due to a faulty escalator or elevator
  • Injuries from falling merchandise in stores
  • Injury at an amusement park or sporting event
  • Slip and fall from “unnatural” accumulation of snow, water, or ice

Types of claims 

Slip and fall claims vary greatly in the specifics, but all involve harm caused by a hazardous surface, space, or environment. Slip and fall claims can involve both private property owners and businesses, whose failure to manage hazardous conditions caused an injury. These injuries can include broken bones, sprains and strains, back pain and other medical issues stemming from a slip and fall—compensatory damages are usually awarded as compensation to cover medical costs along with other losses associated with the injury. Sometimes punitive damages may be sought when recklessness or intentional harm were factors in the accident; these damages are intended to punish wrongdoers beyond compensating an injured person for their losses. No matter what type of slip and fall claim you have experienced, consulting with a qualified personal injury attorney is essential for navigating complex legalities surrounding these cases.

Sources of compensation  

There are a variety of potential sources of compensation in cases where an individual has experienced a slip-and-fall injury. Depending on the circumstances, these can include medical providers, insurers, employers, and even property owners. As such, anyone involved in such a claim should consider pursuing all available options and weigh their potential benefits so that they can receive the best possible resolution for their case. Typically, true compensation will not only cover medical costs but help with any lost wages and long-term care needs that may result from the incident. Additionally, other avenues like punitive and non-economic damages may be available as well.

Call Us for a Free Consultation. Evening and Weekend Appointments Available

You need to feel confident in selecting an attorney who is right for you. We will speak with you, listen to your concerns, and relieve some of the uncertainty and stress you are under. Our free consultation is an opportunity for you to discuss your slip/trip and fall case with us and obtain reliable information and advice. We will inform you of your rights and advise you on what is the best course of action relative to your claim, even if you decide to not retain our services. It is important that you contact an injury attorney as soon as possible to prevent evidence from being lost, witnesses disappearing, and deadlines for filing lawsuits expiring. Contact us today, so we can answer your questions.

I fell at a relative’s house. Should I file a claim against them?

This is a common question. People fall and get hurt on a friend or relative’s property and feel bad about filing a claim or lawsuit. In the end, you have to do what is best for your situation.

Slip and fall injuries can cost a lot of money when it comes to medical expenses and long-term care. Even if your friend or relative offers to cover your emergency medical care out-of-pocket, that may not be the last time you need care. What about lost income if you miss work?

When you file a claim or personal injury lawsuit, you are doing so against their homeowner’s insurance, not them. Never feel bad for doing what is best for your health.

Can I still file a personal injury lawsuit if I didn’t seek medical attention?

If you did not seek medical care at all, you are probably not going to be successful in a slip and fall case. However, if you think your injuries are from a slip and fall incident, and it has been less than two years since the incident took place, you may still have a chance to file a claim. You need to seek medical assistance immediately and then get on the phone with a Cleveland slip and fall lawyer.

It is always a good idea to seek medical attention immediately after a slip and fall incident, even if you do not feel any pain. The full extent of some injuries is often not known for hours, days, or weeks after a slip and fall incident happens.   

I feel stupid for falling, so why would I file a lawsuit?

We always hear from people who say they are embarrassed for falling in the first place. This shouldn’t be the case – many slip and fall incidents are the faults of property owners and their employees.

  • The National Floor Safety Institute says that slip and fall incidents caused around one million people to seek treatment in hospitals each year.

Some of the common causes of these incidents include:

  • Spills of food and drinks on the floor
  • Electrical cords and other wires on the floor
  • Defects in the pavement
  • Carpeting that is loose or torn
  • Inadequate lighting in an area
  • Wet floor signs being absent after an area has been mopped

None of these things are your fault. If you are injured by any of these causes, you need to seek help from a Cleveland slip and fall lawyer.

I wasn’t able to gather evidence from the scene. What should I do now?

The aftermath of a slip and fall incident can be chaotic, especially if you or a loved one are hurt. If you were unable to document the scene with photographs, let your attorney get into investigating the incident. There may be surveillance footage available that can be used in your case, and we may even find that a store employee will testify on your behalf. Remember, if you or a loved one are ever involved in a slip and fall accident, try to photograph the scene and any hazard that caused the incident. As soon as you leave, most evidence will disappear.

Statute of Limitations 

It’s important that if you plan on filing a slip and fall legal claim in Ohio that you act quickly; otherwise your claim may become invalidated due to the statute of limitations period expiring before paperwork is filed with court officials. In most cases where personal injury is involved (e.g., slip and falls), claimants typically have two years from the date when their injury occurred in which they can file their lawsuit with the court system within their state. This two year window begins ticking down immediately following an incident taking place; so it’s important not delay in meeting with an attorney who can help advise you on next steps going forward with regards to filing paperwork correctly within this time frame.  

Slip and falls can cause serious injuries—and sometimes even death—which is why it’s important for property owners across Ohio (and indeed everywhere) to ensure that their premises remain safe at all times for visitors or customers who enter them. If you’ve been injured due to a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property here in Ohio, then understanding how negligence plays into making legal claims against a party responsible for such injuries is essential if you want justice served—and subsequently receive monetary compensation for any resulting losses or suffering incurred by yourself as an individual victim involved in such an incident taking place on another person’s premises here in The Buckeye State. 

An experienced lawyer can help guide you through every step along this process so don’t hesitate contacting one today should you find yourself needing assistance after suffering harm due to slipping and falling while visiting someone else’s home or workplace environment here in Ohio!

If you’ve been in a situation where you’ve slipped and fell for a reason outside of your own doing, contact our team at any of our offices which are located throughout the state of Ohio including: Cleveland, Akron/Canton, Toledo and western Ohio, Mantua and eastern Ohio, Columbus and central Ohio, Cincinnati and southern Ohio, Fairview Park and Lorain, Elyria and Medina. Get in touch with Paulozzi LPA Injury Lawyers at contactus@lawohio.com, or by calling 888-710-0040.

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