Slip-and-Fall Accident Attorneys in Denver, Colorado
A slip-and-fall accident, even a minor one, can leave you with injuries that will need to be evaluated and addressed by a medical professional. And, along with doctor’s appointments, treatments, and time off work, this could leave you facing substantial expenses. If the fall was your own fault or happened at your home, you’ll likely be the one responsible for paying for these. However, if you weren’t at home and the accident occurred due to someone else’s negligence or hazards and unsafe conditions on their property, you may be able to file a premises liability claim against the at-fault party.
If you’d like to consult with a slip-and-fall attorney, call us at Hebets & McCallin P.C., serving those in Denver, Colorado, and throughout the Denver metro area, including Adams, Arapahoe, Jefferson, and Douglas counties.
Premises Liability in Colorado
An important term to understand in these situations is “premises liability.” This legal concept is used when an individual is injured on someone else’s property due to an unsafe or hazardous condition. The idea behind this is that the owner has a certain duty of care to keep their property relatively safe as far as basic care and maintenance. If it’s found that the property owner’s duty of care to visitors was neglected and someone was injured as a result of this, the injured party may have grounds for filing a claim.
These incidents happen more often than you might think. For example, if you’re visiting someone else’s home and fall through their porch because the wood is old and rotted out, you may be able to bring a lawsuit against them because they either should have addressed this issue or alerted you to the danger to ensure you didn’t walk there.
In another example, you may be out in public at a convenience store and slip and fall on spilled water that hadn’t been cleaned up. In this case, it was the store owner’s duty of care to address this spill, clean it up, and put out signage alerting customers to the potential danger. If they failed to do this, filing a lawsuit for an injury in a store may be an option.
In almost all slip-and-fall cases, the statute of limitations for filing a claim is two years from the date of the accident.
Central to any personal injury claim is determining who is actually liable for the accident taking place. In many cases, fault will lie directly with the property owner or homeowner, and this is most likely the case if you’re injured on private property, such as a house or apartment. If you were injured in a store or other business open to the public, the business owner will likely hold the responsibility. In other cases, it may be a government entity that you’ll bring a claim against, and this will happen if you’re injured on public property (like a park) or an official building (like a courthouse). Lastly, if it’s determined that the accident occurred due to your own carelessness, you may not have standing to bring forward any claim.
To prove fault in a slip-and-fall case, you must provide evidence of a few key factors. The first thing that must be shown is that it was the owner who caused the condition that led to the fall (for example, if they had spilled oil on the floor). Next, you must show that even though they knew about the hazardous condition, they did nothing to fix it. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, you must show that the owner should have known it was a dangerous condition as measured by a “reasonable” person’s standard (i.e., would a reasonable person see the same conditions and deem it to be a potential hazard).
Comparative Fault in Colorado
The last concept to understand in these cases is comparative fault (also called contributory negligence). This legal doctrine says that fault can be shared by two parties in cases of personal injury. For example, if you were in a slip-and-fall accident at a grocery store, but you were determined to be partially to blame (say, you were texting on your phone and didn’t see a very obvious spill in the aisle), then any compensation you receive as part of a settlement would be reduced by your portion of fault. So, if the total damages were $15,000, but you were 20% liable, you would only receive $12,000.
Slip-and-Fall Accident Attorneys Serving
At Hebets & McCallin P.C., we realize that there’s never a one-size-fits-all solution to any problem, and we’re committed to truly listening to your story, educating you on your options, and then providing you with honest and informed advice. If you’re looking for a personal injury attorney in the Denver, Colorado, area, reach out to our team today to set up a consultation.