If you sustained injuries as the result of a slip and fall accident in Oakdale, Long Island, you might have a legal claim for compensation.
Slip and fall accidents often occur due to sidewalk damage or other unsafe conditions or hazards. If serious injuries result, you may not have a way to pay your medical bills or obtain the treatment you need. If you cannot return to work, you may have no way to pay your rent or house payment, let alone the cost of future medical care and rehabilitation.
If you sustained injuries in a slip and fall accident due to someone else’s negligence, you might have a valid legal claim for compensation. A slip and fall lawyer in Oakdale, Long Island can protect your legal rights and fight to get you the settlement you deserve.
Contact Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. today at 631-600-0000 for a free consultation.
How Much Is Your Slip and Fall Claim Worth?
The value of any injury claim depends on the nature of the injuries and how much they affect your life in the short- and long-term.
For example, a claim that involves a permanently debilitating injury will carry a substantially higher value than a broken bone, sprain, or stain.
To determine the value of your claim, your slip and fall lawyer will gather all of your medical treatment and care bills and calculate the value of your lost wages to date.
Next, your attorney will consult with doctors and other medical professionals to determine the nature of treatment and care you will likely require in the future. If you sustained an injury that will prevent you from returning to your job – or that prevents you from working at all – your lawyer will calculate the value of your future lost wages and your loss of earning potential.
Finally, your lawyer will add value for pain and suffering, loss of life enjoyment, and any permanent injuries.
Do You Need a Slip and Fall Lawyer to File Your Claim?
Although nothing legally compels you to have an attorney, slip and fall claims are challenging to prepare and argue.
A slip and fall lawyer will protect your legal rights and handle every aspect of your claim. Your attorney will assemble important evidence to make your case, including photos, witness statements, safety records, and testimony from safety and medical experts. After building a persuasive case, your lawyer can submit your claim to the property owner’s insurance company.
Because the insurance company wants to limit its liability (and the amount it must pay), it may deny your claim outright or send lawyers to negotiate a lower settlement.
Your attorney will persist through this process, arguing and negotiating to get you the best possible settlement. However, if the insurance company refuses to deal in good faith, your slip and fall lawyer may recommend taking your case to court.
In court, your lawyer will prove liability by demonstrating that the actions (or inactions) of the property owner or manager met the legal standard for negligence.
Who Had Fault for Your Slip and Fall Injuries?
The New York statutes require property owners – at least those who make their property open to the public – to maintain their property in a safe condition.
The laws provide property owners with a reasonable window of opportunity to become aware of a problem. However, in most circumstances, a property owner or manager must provide a reasonably safe environment for visitors.
They can accomplish this by repairing a cracked sidewalk or filling a large hole in the parking lot – or they can post barricades or similar warning devices around the problem while they wait for a repair contractor.
In some cases, even if the owner or manager did not know a hazard existed, they may still have fault for an injury accident. The courts use a test to make this determination known as the reasonable person standard.
If most reasonable people with the same level of experience and knowledge would have known about and corrected a specific property condition – a water spill on the floor of a retail store, for example – then a property owner could still have liability for any injury accident that results if they do not clean up the spill or place warning cones around it.
After establishing fault, your slip and fall lawyer must demonstrate the four legal elements of negligence.
- Duty of care– the property owner or manager owed a duty of care to visitors to maintain the premises safely, reasonably free of hazards
- Breach of duty– the property owner or manager failed to uphold their duty of care when they permitted a safety hazard to exist on the property, even though a reasonable person would have corrected the problem or called clear attention to the situation
- Causation– the owner or manager’s breach of duty created a dangerous condition which caused your fall and injuries.
- Actual damages– you must prove that you suffered actual (measurable) damages. Your lawyer can demonstrate actual damages by submitting your doctor bills, medical costs, and proof of your lost income
Once your slip and fall lawyer demonstrates negligence, the property’s owner or their insurance company may have an obligation to compensate you for your injuries.
Talk to a Slip and Fall Lawyer Oakdale, Long Island for Free
The attorneys of Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. would like to offer you a no-cost, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case. We can answer your questions and explain your options. Call us today at 631-600-0000.