When a person suffers an injury because of a fall caused by a dangerous property condition, it is commonly referred to as a “slip and fall” accident. Many defendants in these cases will argue that a victim’s injuries were entirely the result of his or her own negligence.
Property owners in Texas have a duty to make sure that their premises are free from any hazards for their guests, or to at least inform them of any possible hazards. In some cases, people can suffer particularly serious injuries that lead to overwhelming medical bills, significant lost wages, and tremendous pain and suffering.
Lawyers for Slip and Fall Accidents in Houston, TX
If you sustained severe injuries or your loved one was killed in a slip and fall accident in Southeast Texas, it will be in your best interest to avoid speaking to any insurance company until you have legal representation. The Gonzalez Law Group, PLLC represents clients in communities in the greater Harris County area including Pearland, Baytown, Seabrook, La Porte, Pasadena, Galena Park, Friendswood and many others.
Our personal injury attorneys in Houston can fight to hold negligent parties accountable and make sure you receive all of the compensation you are entitled to. You can have our lawyers review your case and help you understand all of your legal options as soon as you call (832) 530-4070 to receive a free initial consultation.
Overview of Slip and Fall Injuries in Harris County
- Types of Slip and Fall Accidents in Texas
- What You Should Do After a Slip and Fall Accident in Harris County
- Harris County Slip and Fall Resources
Types of Slip and Fall Accidents in Texas
When people think of slip and fall cases, they usually think of slipping on a wet floor in a supermarket. Property owners owe certain duties to guests and a slip and fall case will usually turn on whether a property owner was negligent in regards to their duties to their guests. Employees working at a business and all customers who patronize the business are considered invitees. To prevail in a slip and fall case, invitees are required to prove that defendants had actual or constructive knowledge of a condition on their premises that posed unreasonable risks of harm, the defendants failed to exercise reasonable care by failing to warn of the condition and failing to correct the condition, and the defendant’s failure was the proximate cause of the invitee’s injury. So for instance, if someone slips and falls on some spilled water at a supermarket, that person would need to show that the property owner knew or should have known from a reasonable inspection that the spilled water existed and posed a danger and that the property owner did not adequately address the issue causing the injury.
Slip and fall accidents are not limited to just wet floors. In addition to failure to clean up a spill, slip and fall accidents can also stem from such hazards as:
- Snow, ice, other weather conditions
- Uneven walking surfaces
- Faulty stairways
- Defective handrails
- Poor lighting
- Holes or floor openings
- Loose carpeting or floorboards
- Trash on floor or cluttered walkways
What You Should Do After a Slip and Fall Accident in Harris County
It is important for any person injured in a slip and fall accident to take certain steps in order to protect their personal injury claim. During the immediate aftermath, the one thing that cannot be stressed enough is that a person should avoid making any recorded statement to an insurance company.
Insurers will often have representatives who seem very friendly and genuinely concerned about a victim’s well-being propose possible settlements, but these amounts are usually much less than what victims are entitled to. Furthermore, even casual conversations with these agents are loaded with questions intended to get victims to make statements that ultimately damage their cases.
When you or a loved one has been hurt in a slip and fall accident, here are the basic steps you should take:
- Seek Medical Attention — Even if you do not think that you were hurt, you should still have a medical professional complete an evaluation. Not only do some serious injuries involve delayed symptoms, but insurance companies also use any delays in treatment to argue that a victim’s injuries are not as severe as he or she claims.
- File a Report — When a slip and fall accident occurs in a retail establishment or apartment complex, the victim will want to make sure a report is filed with the manager on duty or landlord. Ask for a copy of this report.
- Take Pictures — Victims should try to take as many photographs as possible of the accident scene. When a person is unable to do this because of the need for medical attention, the victim should have a friend or family member take pictures for him or her. Photographs should be taken from multiple angles and distances.
- Get Witness Contact Information — If anybody saw your accident, be sure to get their names, phone numbers, or email addresses. Make sure you have some way to contact these people in the event that you or your lawyer need their testimony.
- Call a Houston Personal Injury Attorney — An experienced lawyer can handle all phone calls you receive from insurance companies. The attorney can negotiate with the insurer for a fair and full settlement. If the insurance company is unwilling to provide adequate compensation, your lawyer can file a lawsuit.
Harris County Slip and Fall Resources
Slip and Fall Quick Facts | National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI) — The NFSI is a non-profit organization whose mission is “to aid in the prevention of slips, trips, and falls through education, research, and standards development.” Visit this section of the NFSI website to find various slip and fall statistics. You can also find information about NFSI standards and product testing.
Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) | U.S. Department of Labor | The Economics Daily — According to the BLS, there were 800 work fatalities due to falls, slips or trips in 2015, and more than 40 percent of fatal falls in cases in which the height of falls was known occurred from 15 feet or lower. On this section of the BLS website, you can view statistics for fatal occupational injuries between 2011-2015. You can also find other labor publications.
Slip and Fall Attorneys in Houston, TX
Did you suffer serious injuries or was your loved one killed in a slip and fall accident in Harris County? You will want to make sure that you quickly contact The Gonzalez Law Group, PLLC.
Our Houston personal injury lawyers help individuals throughout Harris County, Friendswood, Pearland, Seabrook, League City, Deer Park, Pasadena, La Porte, Galena Park, Baytown and many others. You can have our attorneys provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case when you call (832) 530-4070 or complete an online contact form to set up a free initial consultation.