When someone slips and falls in a private residence, they are likely to pursue compensation through homeowner’s insurance. It’s a very different story if you are hurt in a more public location, however. After a public slip and fall injury, you need to have the proper evidence available to recover damages, especially if your premises liability case ends up going in front of a jury.
How and Why to Start Building a Paper Trail After a Slip and Fall
If you miss work during a hospital stay or have to find a job with reduced duties due to new physical limitations, you have the legal right to pursue compensation. That remains true even if your slip and fall occurred in a venue like a place of business, parking lot or sidewalk, public pool, Regional Transit Authority stop, or so on.
Building a paper trail on the accident and your injuries is necessary for establishing who is liable for the accident. It also helps value your damages, so you know how much compensation the liable party may owe you for medical costs and lost income. To create that paper trail, be sure to:
- Ask any bystanders to provide their contact details. Your attorney may need to speak with these eyewitnesses who saw the fall to verify the details of the accident.
- Create your own documentation. Take pictures of the scene and the circumstances surrounding the accident, such as where you fell and anything that may have caused you to slip when you wouldn’t have fallen otherwise. That could be a wet or uneven surface, debris left in walkways, broken railing, insufficient lighting, and so on.
- Report the accident. It’s important to inform the relevant party that a fall occurred and you were hurt. Try not to make any commentary on fault here, but rather just state the facts. Depending on where you fell, that person could be an administrator, property owner, on-duty manager, or someone else who oversees the public space. Do not sign anything given to you by that person without first consulting an attorney, however. In some cases, you may simply need to inform the police.
- Seek attention from medical professionals. Make sure to do this quickly, preferably as soon as you leave the scene. With some injuries, you may need to call 911 and be taken by ambulance to the emergency room. It is critical to have medical documentation in place showing what date you were hurt and the extent of your injuries.
- Talk to a qualified Louisiana slip and fall attorney. While investigating the fall, your attorney may need to help you acquire other types of documentation, like any security camera footage that may be available.
- Write down other important details. You should keep track of any expenses you incur, such as medical bills, out-of-pocket costs while seeking treatment for the injury, hours of work missed while recovering, and so on.
Of course, you don’t just need to gather documentation for a successful outcome when pursuing compensation. You also need to consider how to release documents to other parties correctly, and that’s where an attorney is crucial.
Insurance adjusters or the legal counsel for the at-fault party may attempt to use irrelevant past injuries to argue your current medical condition wasn’t caused by the fall. That’s one crucial reason to see a doctor quickly and follow your doctor’s orders while attending all your scheduled appointments.
Having an experienced Louisiana personal injury lawyer on your side is a massive help in overcoming these common defense tactics. Without a professional legal advocate, slip and fall victims are more likely to make mistakes that may ruin their financial recovery.
Protect Your Legal Rights With Help From an Experienced Slip and Fall Attorney
Did you take a fall in a public place and want to assess your options for a financial recovery? We want to hear about your injury and represent you in court against the negligent property owner. Get in touch with the Scott Vicknair law firm to schedule a consultation by calling 504-500-1111 or drop a message here.