Many types of dangerous conditions on public and private property can lead to injuries that qualify for slip and fall claims, and property owners in California have a duty to the guests who visit their properties to provide them with reasonable protection against situations that could harm them.
When they do not acknowledge or fix a danger on their property, and a guest suffers an injury that leads to significant damages, the victim can file a claim against the property owner under premises liability law, or California Civil Code (CIV) §1714.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), anyone can suffer injuries from a fall, but adults aged 65 and older make up the largest number of affected victims.
More than 3 million people receive treatment in emergency rooms throughout the United States each year for fall injuries, and at least 300,000 older adults receive inpatient treatment for fall-related hip fractures. Falls also contribute to other serious conditions, such as traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Even one unmarked hazard can have long-term consequences for victims who suffer injuries caused by a fall. Certain examples of dangerous conditions that qualify for a slip and fall claim allow the victim to seek financial awards for the losses incurred by their injury.
Poor or Nonexistent Lighting
When welcoming guests, visitors, or customers during evening or early morning hours, property owners must ensure adequate lighting to prevent missteps or trips that can lead to falls and injuries. This includes bright lighting in spaces such as parking areas, yards, front steps, porches, and entryways, where normally safe conditions could easily turn hazardous if the guest cannot see clearly.
Even with sufficient lighting, unexpected concerns with outdoor ground surfaces, such as sidewalks and driveways, can lead to serious slip and fall accidents. Property owners should be aware of holes, cracks, crumbling pavement, and other issues on their property that could cause harm to unsuspecting guests.
Slippery Walking Surfaces During Bad Weather
Angelenos do not have to worry about treacherous winter weather conditions like ice and snow. Rain occurs less often in Los Angeles than in most other areas of the U.S. However, homeowners, apartment complex managers, and business owners still have a responsibility to prepare their homes for guests and residents who plan to visit during bad weather. Rain and mud can increase the likelihood of a slip or fall, especially if the property owner does not clean up or mark the area immediately.
Damaged or Uneven Flooring
If you suffered an injury due to a dangerous flooring issue on someone else’s property, you likely expected that the floor would not have any cracks, uneven areas, or damaged surfaces that would put you in harm’s way. Owners have a duty to either fix the situation before someone trips and falls on it or clearly mark the area so that guests know to avoid it. Failing to acknowledge dangerous conditions that qualify for a slip and fall claim can lead to serious injuries and legal action.
Damaged or Poorly Maintained Stairs
Even in optimal conditions, stairs present a hazard in themselves, making the proper installation and maintenance of structurally sound staircases and handrails critical in avoiding serious injury. If property owners cannot resolve an issue with stairs before guests arrive, they should block off the area to prevent access.
Clutter in Walkways
Not only can residential guests and store patrons injure themselves while tripping over clutter, such as boxes and displays in walkways, but they can also trip and fall trying to avoid the hazards in their paths. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires all businesses to keep passageways clean, organized, and free of clutter for the safety of both employees and patrons, and failure to abide by this law may lead to dangerous conditions that qualify for a slip and fall claim.
Customers often have open drinks that can spill and create a hazard for others, especially in public places, such as restaurants, shopping malls, and retail stores. If employees do not sufficiently monitor the cleanliness of the store and clean up spills and other liquid or food messes promptly, serious slip and fall accidents could happen.
A Lawyer Can Help You Seek Financial Recovery
If a business or property owner holds full or partial responsibility for the Los Angeles slip and fall accident that led to your injury, a lawyer could help you seek financial awards in your case. The types of awards you could receive compensation for include:
- Medical bills and other injury-related health care expenses
- Lost wages
- Loss or reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
Amounts vary based on the circumstances of your case, but a lawyer can assess your damages and seek fair financial recovery on your behalf.
Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to Get Started on Your Case
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, our lawyers know you already have enough to deal with during your difficult time and do not need the added stress of managing your case on your own. We can help you hold the liable party accountable for the harm they caused you, and you do not owe us anything unless we achieve financial recovery for you. Contact our legal team today at (800) 223-5115 to speak with our legal team about your case.