Falls are a leading cause of unexpected injuries in Los Angeles. When you slip and fall on someone else’s property, you may have the right to obtain compensation. However, the things you do immediately after your accident will affect your personal injury case. Our attorneys discuss the four things you need to do after you’ve been injured in a Los Angeles slip and fall accident.
Let the Owner Know You’ve Fallen
Property owners will be quick to deny responsibility for your slip and fall accident. In fact, they may even try to argue that you didn’t fall, at all. You can protect your legal claim by immediately reporting your fall after it happens. Find an employee and ask if there is an accident report form you can complete. Be sure to include as many details as possible, including the time, date, and location of your fall. Getting your fall on the record will help to preserve your ability to recover compensation.
Get Checked Out By a Doctor
Go see a doctor, even if you don’t think that you’ve suffered any serious injuries. Some of your injuries could be internal. A thorough medical examination will ensure that all of your injuries are diagnosed and treated right away. This will help to prevent complications that could put your health in serious danger.
Going to the doctor will not protect your health, but also create valuable evidence for your slip and fall injury case. Your doctor will document all of your injuries, symptoms, and treatments in a medical report. This report will serve two primary purposes. First, it will serve as proof of your injuries. Second, it will establish a causal link between your fall and your injuries.
Skipping medical care will not only put your health at risk, but also jeopardize your personal injury case.
Gather Evidence & Write Things Down
Be prepared for property owners and their insurance companies to fight you every step of the way when you file a slip and fall lawsuit. You’ll need evidence to prove your case and recover compensation. Gathering evidence early on in the process is extremely important.
Photographs: Take photographs of the location where you slipped and fell. Be sure to capture any hazards or dangerous that contributed to your fall.
Surveillance Footage: Request copies of surveillance footage that may show your slip and fall accident. You may need an attorney’s help with this particular step.
Medical Records: Request copies of your medical records. The details will help to prove that your injuries were caused by your slip and fall accident.
Witness Statements: Did anyone else see you fall? Be sure to get their names and contact information. If you can, ask for a brief statement describing what they saw and why they believe you fell.
Clothing: Make note of the clothes and shoes you were wearing when you fell. Property owners may try to blame you for your own injuries. One tactic is to attack the clothes and shoes you were wearing. They’ll claim that poor treads, long pants, or improper footwear caused your fall, not the owner’s negligence.
Weather Conditions: Did you fall outside? Document the weather conditions at the time of the accident. If an owner had an obligation to clear a sidewalk or walkway, but failed to do so,
Refuse Early Offers
Insurance companies may approach you shortly after your accident and offer a settlement. While money in hand right away can be great, accepting the offer could do more harm than good. Accepting an offer now will probably waive your right to file a lawsuit for additional compensation in the future. If this happens, you’ll be stuck with the insurer’s initial low-ball payout. The amount of money you get probably won’t be enough to cover all of your costs.
Be patient and refuse to discuss your case with anyone until you’ve spoken with an experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer. Contact Citywide Law Group to schedule a free consultation. We’ll help you understand your rights and fight for the money you deserve.