Damages from a slip and fall accident include your physical injuries. They also include financial losses, such as medical bills and lost wages.
Slips, trips, and falls are some of the most common causes of personal injury. A fall can occur anywhere. You can experience a slip and fall accident while you are shopping, enjoying a resort or amusement park, or taking your child to school. If a property owner’s negligence caused your fall, the owner could be financially responsible for your injuries and other damages.
Falls can cause severe injuries, including:
- Back and spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken bones and fractures
- Neck and shoulder injuries
- Sprains and strains
- Soft tissue injuries
Damages from a slip and fall accident include your physical injuries. They also include financial losses, such as medical bills and lost wages. Your emotional and mental trauma are also damages included in a slip and fall accident claim.
Five Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident
Protecting your health and your legal rights are two of the most important goals after a slip and fall injury. Five steps that can help accomplish both goals are:
1. Report the Accident Immediately
If you are injured on another person’s property, report the injury to the property owner immediately, if possible. When the property owner is not present, report the injury to a manager or other person in charge of the property. If the manager creates a written report, ask for a copy of the report as soon as the report is complete.
2. Document the Accident Scene
Whenever possible, take pictures and make a video of the accident scene. Make sure you capture the hazard that caused your fall or injury. For example, if you fell because of broken steps, take pictures of the steps. If items cluttered a walkway, take pictures of the items.
Pictures of the area at the time of your fall are important because the property owner may correct the matter before you can return to photograph the scene.
3. Seek Medical Treatment for Injuries
If you do not go to an emergency room or urgent care facility immediately after the accident, it is wise to see your physician as soon as possible. Documenting your injuries is crucial for a slip and fall accident claim. Some accident injuries may not be apparent immediately after the fall.
Make sure you report all symptoms, regardless of how minor, to your doctor immediately. By doing so, you help your doctor diagnose and treat your injury, but you also create a medical record of your injuries.
4. Document Your Damages
In addition to your physical injuries, you need to document other damages. Keep copies of all medical bills and receipts for out-of-pocket expenses. Keep track of all missed time from work and other expenses, such as travel to and from doctor’s visits.
You might also want to keep notes detailing how your injuries impact your day. For example, how much pain do you experience each day, and what is your emotional state? What types of activities are you unable to perform? Do you need family and friends to clean your home, care for your children, and wash your laundry? This information can help your Washington DC personal injury lawyer support your claim for pain and suffering damages.
5. Contact a Washington DC Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer
The insurance company or property owner may contact you after your accident. It is in your best interest to postpone conversations with these parties until after meeting with a Washington DC accident lawyer. You need to understand your legal rights and options for recovering compensation. The insurance company and property owner are more concerned with limiting liability instead of your wellbeing and damages.
We encourage you to contact our office to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced slip and fall attorneys in Washington, DC.