The snow and ice are once again upon Chicago. During this season, the law offices of Lloyd Miller receives at least three calls a day from potential clients who have fallen and sustained serious injuries. We conduct a detailed interview with the client immediately. However, it is what client before they call us that may spell the difference between a good settlement or mediocre or no settlement.
Here is what you need to do and what your premises liability lawyer will need to do in order to bring your slip and fall accident to a successful resolution:
1) Document the accident. Write down all details as soon as you are able. Were there warning signs present? Defects or objects that contributed to you fall? What part did weather play in your fall? Remember you can’t sue Mother Nature for making conditions that caused you fall but you can sue for human made conditions. I.E., fresh snow on a sidewalk is not actionable but improperly shoveled snow may be.
2) Find Witnesses. Write down their contact info and ask them if they would be willing to give a brief statement about the occurrence.
3) Take photographs of the fall site. Try to do so immediately from various angles. If you are unable, return to the site afterward at the same time your fall occurred to best replicate the conditions you experienced on the day of the fall.
4) Seek Medical Attention! Some injuries are not immediately apparent or visible. Keep records of all follow-up visits and treatments. Remember-if your injury is not serious enough to see a doctor an insurance company will deem it not serious enough to compensate. This is crucial!
5) Take photographs of your injuries. No matter how bloody or graphic. This is compelling evidence and visual proof of pain for a jury or insurance company.
6) Hire Grazian and Volpe! We have a proven and long track record of obtaining maximum settlement dollars for all our clients. Experience in this area is vital to success in litigation.
Grazian & Volpe will bring your case to a successful result by:
1) Proving a duty of care- it must be established that the defendant had a duty for your safety. This may be in a general public safety sense or a workers’ compensation context.
2) Establish the Defendant’s control of the accident site (premises):
Were signs put up to alert customers as to a dangerous conditions as in a puddle caused by a leak, or a recently mopped area?
Did the conditions exist long enough that a defendant should have known about it and corrected it? Like defective stair rise, missing banister or broken lighting?
3) Bring in an expert witness where technical issues of safety are called into question such as the cut of a curb or the rise of a staircase.
4) Research Law: there are many sources of law that apply to slip and fall litigation. There is case law, state, city and federal statutes and regulations. It is important to hire a law firm that is familiar with all law sources.
A simple slip and fall settlement can be very large. However, proving the liability and cause of the fall can be very complicated. Injured parties need experienced counsel in these matters.