Every year, thousands of Americans are injured in slip and fall accidents. At the Rizio Liberty Lipinsky, we know that such accidents are common in San Francisco and can have serious, lifelong consequences. Causes of such accidents range from slick floors to dim lighting to poor construction and craftsmanship. All too often, property owners or managers are aware of a potential hazard but never address it. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, it’s essential that you know what to do next.
What Steps Should You Take After an Accident?
Slip and fall accidents, also called trip and fall accidents, happen when dangerous conditions exist at a property. These accidents happen in both indoor and outdoor settings. Debris, uneven floors, slippery spills, ice, poor lighting and other hazards can all cause accidents that result in serious physical injury.
If you’ve had a slip or trip and fall accident, it’s essential that you seek medical treatment no matter how serious your injuries seem at first. You should also notify the owner or manager of the property about the accident as soon as possible. Keep a written record of who you notified as well as the date and time that you reported the accident. If there was anyone else in the area when you were injured, ask for their names and phone numbers in case you need witness statements.
Be sure to document everything that you can about the accident. Take photos of the area where you were injured. Note what you type of clothing and shoes you were wearing at the time. You should also write down exactly what happened as soon as possible after the accident so that you can provide clear and detailed information to a lawyer if needed. Of course, you should also keep copies of any medical records or bills related to the accident.
In the days following a slip or trip and fall accident, you may be contacted by the property owner’s insurance company. You should decline to give a statement to the insurance company. Be sure that you do not give or take the blame for the accident. Instead, give the insurance representative your attorney’s phone number. If you don’t have an attorney yet, let the insurance company know that you’re looking for an attorney and will call them back with the firm’s contact information.