If you have injured yourself in a fall, whether you slipped on the wet floor in a grocery store or ice that wasn’t salted, or tripped over an uneven or broken sidewalk, the first thing you need to know is that the fact that you fell does not, by itself, entitle you to anything. You are entitled to compensation under our law only if that fall was caused by the fault of someone else. Perhaps the grocery store staff didn’t keep the floors dry, your neighbor didn’t salt his driveway or the city hasn’t repaired a broken sidewalk. That fault, or negligence as we say in the law, can take many different forms, but it is the first thing we have to demonstrate if you are going to be able to recover for your injuries.
Assuming that fault or negligence can be established, you are then entitled to compensation for all of your losses, including pain and suffering, income loss, medical bills, care needs, housekeeping, and pretty much any other expenses that you have incurred as a result of the accident. Some of these losses will be easy to quantify, like time off work for someone who is the employee of a business. Others can be more difficult, especially if you have been paying cash for some of these expenses. Wherever possible, keep a record of all payments you have made and if you did pay cash for something, get a receipt. Sometimes, valuable services, most notably for care, are provided by a family member or friend to whom no immediate payment will be made. We may still be able to recover for those services, but we will need to prove them. Keeping a diary of who provided these services, for how many hours, and a general description of what was done will greatly increase the chances of being able to prove, and thus recover, all of your losses.
If you have been injured in a slip or trip and fall, call me. I'm happy to talk to you about how we can help.