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Chicago Slip-And-Fall Accident Attorneys

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A shopping trip should not send you to the emergency room, but sometimes, that is exactly where you end up if you are injured in a slip-and-fall accident. Property owners have a duty to maintain their property to avoid causing harm to others. When they fail to uphold their duty and their failure results in injury, they may be held financially liable for the losses suffered by the victim. A Chicago premises liability attorney can work with you to discover if you can pursue legal action for the negligence of a property owner.

Why Choose A Chicago Slip And Fall Lawyer From Smith LaCien?

If you have been injured in a slip and fall due to another person’s negligence or wrongdoing, you may find your finances depleted from medical bills and lost wages. You should not have to suffer the physical pain and financial consequences of an injury caused by another person’s wrongful conduct. Smith LaCien LLP can help you get the compensation you need to get back on your feet. Our consultations are free, and you are under no obligation after your free consultation. So get started and call (312) 509-8900 to schedule your free consultation with a Chicago injury lawyer.

The Duty of Property Owners In Chicago

All property owners or managers have a duty to exercise ordinary care by maintaining their properties in a reasonably safe condition for all persons who are lawfully on the premises. They are also under a duty to avoid creating or allowing any dangerous conditions to exist on their property. Failure to maintain their property as required is a breach of their duty and may expose them to liability.

A property owner’s duty changes depending on the status of the visitor to their property. They owe a higher duty of care to visitors characterized as invitees or licensees, those visitors who are lawfully on the property than to trespassers. Although a property owner owes no duty to a trespasser, they are under a duty to not willfully or wantonly cause injury to trespassers. This means that property owners cannot set traps or create dangerous conditions to intentionally injure trespassers.

Proving Liability in a Slip-and-Fall Case in Chicago

Your attorney from Smith LaCien, LLP, will thoroughly investigate all aspects of your fall, your injuries, and your related financial damages to present a compelling claim to the insurance company of the property owner. Proving their liability requires demonstrating evidence of the following legal points of liability due to negligence:

  • The property owner had a duty of care to take reasonable measures to prevent harm from coming to those lawfully on their property
  • They breached this duty through an act of negligence
  • Their negligent breach of duty caused an injury
  • The injury victim suffered significant damages due to the injury

Ultimately, proving negligence and liability in slip-and-fall cases amounts to asking the question, “Would another, reasonable person have acted differently under the same circumstances in order to prevent injury?” If the answer is yes, then the property owner is liable for damages due to their negligence.

Causes of Slip-and-Fall Accidents in Chicago

No one expects a sudden fall to send their life spinning off-course, but when conditions present a significant fall hazard, the result can be serious damages including physical injuries and financial hardship. Common causes of slip-and-fall injuries in Illinois include the following:

  • Icy or snowy sidewalks, walkways, and outdoor steps
  • Uneven or broken sidewalks or pavement
  • Wet floors
  • Slick floors due to improper cleaning or waxing products
  • Uneven floors
  • Loose carpets or mats
  • Dangling power cords
  • Unmarked floor-level changes
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Debris or clutter on the floor
  • Spills of slippery liquids or products

Proving liability in a slip and fall case requires showing that the property owner or manager was aware of the fall hazard, had reasonable opportunity to address the hazard by making repairs or placing warning signs, and carelessly neglected the duty to prevent others from experiencing a fall due to the presence of the slip-and-fall hazard.

Making a Claim for a Slip-and-Fall Accident In Chicago

If you want to take legal action for an injury sustained from a slip-and-fall accident, you will have to prove your case as well as the damages suffered as a result of the accident. It is not unusual for the defendant to try to reduce their liability by blaming the victim for the accident. That should not deter you from holding them responsible because even if your actions contributed to the accident, you may still be entitled to compensation from the property owner. Slip and fall accidents are very common at construction sites. Making sure you enlist the help of a Chicago construction accident attorney is critical to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

Illinois adheres to the modified comparative negligence principle for the recovery of damages. Under modified comparative negligence, an injured victim is still entitled to financial compensation as long as they are less than 50% at fault for their injury. For example, if your damages are $100,000 and you are determined to be 20% at fault, your compensation will be reduced by $20,000.

If there was a loss of life involved in your slip and fall accident claim, don’t hesitate to contact our wrongful death attorneys in Chicago as soon as possible.

What to Do After a Slip-and-Fall Accident In Chicago

A bad fall is not only painful and traumatic, it can also be embarrassing when it occurs in public, but by keeping a cool head, you can protect yourself physically and financially. If you are too seriously injured to move safely, or if you’ve experienced a loss of consciousness from a head injury, you may be able to do little other than wait in place for help to arrive. However, if you can use your phone, or hand it to a friend or companion to use on your behalf, you can document critical evidence at the scene. Use your phone to take the following steps after a slip-and-fall accident:

  • First, call 911 to request emergency services for a severe injury or arrange transportation to a hospital for less severe injuries
  • Take photos of whatever caused the fall, such as a broken floor tile, an unmarked step-down, or a puddle on the floor
  • Take photos of any visible injuries
  • Add the contact information of the business manager and/or property owner
  • Ask the property owner or manager to fill out an accident report

Always go to a hospital immediately after a bad fall. Ask for a thorough examination and tell the doctor about all of your symptoms, even ones that seem minor. Have the doctor give you a detailed report with their recommendations for treatment and your prognosis for recovery. Then, call the Chicago slip-and-fall lawyers at Smith LaCien LLP for a free confidential consultation before speaking to insurance company representatives.

Injuries From Chicago Slip-and-Fall Accidents

Falls can cause debilitating injuries. Even less serious slip-and-fall injuries may cause temporary financial hardship during recovery. Common injuries claimed in slip-and-fall cases in Chicago include the following:

  • Back injuries
  • Neck injuries
  • Head injuries and traumatic brain injuries
  • Knee injuries
  • Fractures of the limbs, collarbone, or hips
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Broken teeth or facial injury
  • Bruises and lacerations

No fall is minor for elderly victims, but even young, healthy victims can experience significant injuries from a sudden fall. When a negligent property owner carelessly ignores a fall hazard, and the result is injuries to someone lawfully on the property, the owner’s property liability insurance must cover the consequences to the victim—known as “damages” in a personal injury claim.

What Damages Can I Recover in a Slip-and-Fall Case in Chicago?

Serious injuries can quickly become expensive when medical bills begin rolling in at the same time your injuries keep you from returning to work at your previous capacity, or from returning at all. A successful slip-and-fall injury claim can recover compensation for common damages such as the following:

  • Medical expenses
  • Future medical care costs related to necessary ongoing care
  • Lost wages
  • Future income loss
  • Diminished earning capacity due to fall-related disability
  • Pain and suffering
  • Any other non-economic damages that might apply in your case such as disfigurement compensation for facial injuries or loss of enjoyment of life for severe disability or impairment

Your Chicago slip-and-fall lawyer can talk to you about the damages in your case and then carefully calculate your economic damages based on medical bills and your W2 forms as well as using a formula to determine compensation for your pain and suffering.

Common Insurance Company Tactics to Minimize Payouts

It’s important to hire skilled legal representation from Smith LaCien slip-and-fall lawyers in Chicago soon after your fall. It takes experienced attorneys to recognize and counteract typical insurance company tactics to deny or undervalue slip-and-fall claims to protect their profits at the expense of your payout. Common insurance company methods include the following:

  • Calling very soon after the fall with a low settlement offer in exchange for your signing away your rights to file a lawsuit. Often this is before you know the full extent of the financial and physical damages you’re facing from the injury
  • Calling on a recorded line and using your remarks out of context against you
  • Following your social media account to “catch” you appearing fit even if in reality you were smiling bravely through your pain
  • Asking for access to your medical records and then scouring your history to look for pre-existing conditions or previous injuries they can claim have caused your symptoms
  • Claiming your doctor’s treatment recommendations aren’t necessary for your injury

It’s highly beneficial to hire an attorney immediately after your injury and then direct the insurance adjuster to speak only to your lawyer.

Contact a Chicago Slip and Fall Accident Attorney

There is no such thing as an easy slip-and-fall case. Your case deserves the attention and detail required to get full and fair compensation for your injury. When you work with the accident attorneys in Chicago at Smith LaCien LLP you can rest assured that your case is in competent hands. We represent our clients on a contingency fee basis, which means that you pay nothing unless we win.

To learn more about how we can help, call us at (312) 509-8900 or contact us using our online form.

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