SLIP AND FALL
Tulsa Slip and Fall Attorney
More than a million people each year visit emergency rooms in the United States because of falls. Some fall victims sustain minor injuries like cuts or bruises, while others may break bones or suffer concussions. Some falls can even be fatal. If you are hurt on someone else’s property, Oklahoma law may give you the right to make a claim against that person or the company that owns and/or controls the property. Whether you fell on public property, in a private home or in a business, such as a store or restaurant, consider the important actions listed below.
PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS.
CONSIDER THESE STEPS AFTER AN ACCIDENT
SEEK MEDICAL ATTENTION RIGHT AWAY
You should seek medical care for your injuries immediately after a fall. Not only do you need to get your injuries checked out and treated, but you also need medical records showing the extent of the damage and injuries caused by the fall. Some major injuries (for example, a traumatic brain injury) show few immediate symptoms, therefore timely medical care and diagnosis could save your life. Evidence of the extent of your injuries will also be valuable when you pursue an injury claim.
REPORT THE ACCIDENT IMMEDIATELY
You need to alert the person or company in charge of the property as soon as the accident happens. This means telling the homeowner, calling the landlord or alerting the manager at a business. If the injury happened at a business or in an apartment, the store owner or landlord should make a formal accident report, you should ask for a copy. If you need to leave the accident scene for medical treatment, be sure to call back later to get a copy of the incident report.
BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY AFTER THE ACCIDENT
Whether you are dealing with a homeowner, a landlord or a business manager, you should avoid getting emotional, casting blame, admitting guilt or arguing about how or why you fell. You don’t want to say anything that could be used to undermine your potential claim for compensation. You also don’t want the situation to escalate into an argument. Simply report the facts of your injury in a straightforward way.
GET WITNESS CONTACT INFORMATION
You should obtain the names, addresses and telephone numbers of anyone who witnessed the accident. These witnesses can back up your story if the property owner tells a different version of events in an effort to escape liability for your fall injuries.
Be sure to take detailed photographs of the location where you fell, as well as any conditions that contributed to causing the fall (a broken tile or puddle of spilled liquid, for example). Try to ensure that the pictures show clearly exactly what the conditions were at the time of your accident. For example, if a homeowner clears the snow from a driveway and salts it an hour after your accident, it could become more difficult to prove that it was slippery and unsafe at the time of the fall.
CALL AN ATTORNEY
You should contact an attorney as soon as you can after you have suffered a fall injury or other accident caused by negligence. A premises liability attorney can help you to get started gathering evidence before it disappears, and can also make sure you don’t answer questions unnecessarily or say anything that you should not. It is especially important to consult with an attorney before you sign anything or negotiate with the insurance company that covers the property owner. Insurers focus on their own profits rather than on providing you full and fair compensation for your injuries.
Keith & Associates Legal, PLLC is well versed in the area of premise liability. Our firm is located in the heart of downtown Tulsa, Oklahoma.