Legal Rights of a Senior Injured in a Store Slip and Fall Accident
Slip and fall injuries are common for seniors, often leading to serious health complications. In fact, according to the National Floor Safety Institute, falls are the leading cause of injury and death for seniors over the age of 65. Some of the most common causes of these accidents include slips on wet surfaces, tripping on obstacles along the way, and losing balance due to illness or medication side effects. When it comes to senior slip and fall accidents caused by wet surfaces or obstacles on the floor, these incidents regularly occur in stores or other public places.
Falls can cause various health problems for seniors, including broken bones, head injuries, and spinal cord injuries. In some cases, slip and fall accidents involving seniors can even be fatal. That’s why it is important for seniors and their loved ones to be aware of the risks associated with slip and fall accidents and take steps to prevent them. In addition, if a senior sustained injury as the result of a slip and fall accident caused by someone else’s negligence, that older individual needs to understand his or her important legal rights.
Senior’s Responsibility to Keep Safe
A senior does have a level of responsibility to bear in mind when out and about. In other words, a senior cannot be careless or reckless when walking in a public setting. In order to protect a senior’s safety, there are some tips for preventing falls include:
- Wearing shoes with good traction when walking in slippery areas
- Keeping pathways and walkways clear of clutter and obstacles
- Staying well-hydrated to avoid dizziness or loss of balance
- Regularly exercising to improve strength and balance
- Consulting with a doctor about any medications that may cause dizziness or drowsiness
Senior Slip and Fall Accidents and Premises Liability
Premises liability is a legal term that refers to the responsibility of a property owner or occupier to ensure the safety of people on their property. This includes ensuring that the property is free of hazards and that any visitors are warned of potential dangers. If someone is injured on someone else’s property, they may be able to sue for damages under premises liability law.
Four Elements of Negligence in a Senior Slip and Fall Accident Case
In order for a senior to prove that a store, office, or some other commercial enterprise is responsible for a senior’s injuries in a slip and fall case, four elements of negligence must be proven. These are:
- Duty of care
- Breach of duty of care
- Breach caused foreseeable injuries
- Senior suffered actual injuries
Duty of Care
Pursuant to the doctrine of premises liability, a store or other business needs to keep the premises reasonably safe. That means keeping the floor free of dangerous spills, clutter, or other hazards.
Breach of Duty of Care
A breach of duty of care can occur when a person or organization fails to meet the standards they are supposed to uphold. This can include things like not providing a safe environment for people to work in, or not properly warning people of potential dangers.
A senior may obtain financial compensation for any foreseeable injuries resulting from the defendant’s breach of duty of care. Foreseeable injuries can come in different forms, including physical injuries, emotional injuries, and financial losses. The injuries need to be of a type that reasonably could be expected to occur as a result of a particular situation. For example, it is foreseeable that a senior might sustain a broken hip as a result of slipping and falling on a wet floor in a grocery store.
Finally, in order for a senior to successfully pursue a negligence claim because of a slip and fall in a store, that individual must have sustained actual injuries. An example (as mentioned a moment ago) is a broken hip. A claim cannot be made for something purely speculative.
Types of Financial Compensation in a Slip and Fall Case Involving a Senior
When it comes to personal injury cases, victims may be awarded several different types of damages. These damages can be broken down into two categories: compensatory damages and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are designed to reimburse the victim for any losses they have suffered, while punitive damages are intended to punish the defendant for their actions.
In a negligence case, the victim can typically expect to receive compensatory damages for medical expenses, lost wages (if a senior is still working), and pain and suffering. In some cases, they may also be awarded punitive damages if the defendant’s actions were particularly egregious. It is important to note that the amount of financial compensation a victim receives will vary depending on the facts of their case.
What to Look For in a Personal Injury Lawyer
Finally, if you are a senior who has been injured in a slip and fall accident in a store or similar location, you may need to hire a personal injury lawyer. Indeed, if you intend to pursue a claim for compensation, you definitely need to consider retaining legal counsel seriously. There are many things to look for when hiring a personal injury lawyer.
The first thing to look for is experience. The lawyer should have experience with personal injury cases. They should also have experience with the type of injury that you have.
Another thing to look for is a good reputation. The lawyer should have a good reputation with former clients. They should also have a good reputation with the legal community.
You should also look at the lawyer’s fees. The lawyer should have a fee agreement that is easy to understand. The lawyer should also be willing to work on a contingency basis. This means that they will only get paid if you win your case.
You should also ensure that the lawyer is licensed to practice in your state. You can check this by visiting the website of your state’s bar association.
Finally, you should feel comfortable with the lawyer. You should feel like you can trust them and that they will represent your best interests.