Slip and fall accidents occur all the time in Florida. If you are involved in this type of accident, it can result in severe and even debilitating injuries. If the accident was caused by the negligence of the property owner, operator, or another responsible entity, it may be possible to file a lawsuit for compensation.
One of the biggest challenges in these cases is answering the question – “What is my slip and fall case worth?”
Each slip and fall accident is unique, and the compensation in these cases will vary. The circumstances of the situation determine the slip and fall case value.
If you or someone in your family has been involved in a slip and fall accident and suffered an injury, it’s wise to get in touch with an experienced attorney. They can review the facts of your case and determine if you are entitled to compensation. Hiring legal representation for your case can increase the likelihood of recovering the full slip and fall case worth.
Attorneys understand that dealing with the aftermath of slip and fall accidents is challenging. This is often a long process, and recovery can be lengthy. In addition, injuries in these accidents often require ongoing and extensive medical treatment and time to heal completely. Because of this, it’s necessary to have an attorney on your side to handle things like filing the needed paperwork, keeping up with deadlines, and providing advice and guidance through the entire legal process.
When determining the value of a slip and fall case, there is no average number that applies since all the cases and circumstances are unique. While this is true, certain factors will be considered when determining what amount of compensation you should receive. Keep reading to learn more about these factors and how attorneys can help you recover the maximum amount of compensation for your situation
Table of Contents
The Most Common Causes of Florida Slip and Fall Accidents
When you are involved in a slip and fall accident, it can result in injuries that range from minor to severe. NSC (The National Safety Council) has reported that more than 800,000 people in the United States go to the hospital annually after being involved in a slip and fall incident.
Some of the most common reasons that these accidents happen include:
Uneven or Wet Surfaces
Worn-out carpeting or rugs, loose floorboards, and a freshly mopped or waxed floor can cause slip and fall accidents in Florida. It’s important to use warning signs on wet or waxed flooring and repair uneven walking surfaces. When this is done, accidents can be prevented.
If it is raining or cold outside, the risk of slip and fall accidents increases significantly. For example, if sidewalks freeze over when it is cold out, they will become dangerous because of the slippery conditions.
Another common cause of accidents in some professions involves improper training. This is especially problematic for those who work in construction. If construction site workers don’t receive proper training, they are much more likely to slip and file during their daily duties. These workers are also responsible for handling heavy items and machinery. The consequences of slipping and falling while working can be severe and result in serious and even fatal injuries.
If there are obstructions on the floor, then accidents may occur. Some of the most common obstructions a person may slip, trip, and fall on include trash, boxes, and electrical cords. A fall that involves some obstruction commonly occurs in storage rooms of businesses, such as stores and supermarkets in Florida.
If an individual doesn’t wear the right shoes, they may slip and fall. An example would be someone who wears high heels or a restaurant worker who doesn’t wear slip-resistant shoes. The wearer is likelier to experience a slip and fall accident in these situations.
Common Types of Injuries That Occur in Slip and Fall Accidents
If you are involved in a slip and fall accident, it’s not unusual to experience an injury. After these accidents, the victim can suffer minor injuries that only take a few days or weeks to heal. In contrast, others may experience more severe injuries that result in ongoing pain and suffering and the need for extensive medical treatment.
Some of the most common types of injuries a victim may sustain in a slip and fall accident include:
- Herniated discs
- Broken bones and fractures
- Bruises and cuts
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Soft tissue injuries
In many cases, victims of slip and fall injuries will require immediate medical attention. Even in cases where emergency care isn’t needed, being checked out by a doctor is recommended. Unfortunately, medical care is costly, and the individual who needs the treatment is stuck with the related bills.
The cost of medical treatment is one factor that goes into determining the value of your case. Hiring an attorney will ensure you recover the total value of your medical care and not have to deal with extensive debts. It’s a good idea to get in touch with an attorney right away to schedule a consultation to discuss your situation and the actual value of your case.
Calculating Your Settlement After a Slip and Fall Accident
When determining the value of your slip and fall claim, your attorney will consider multiple factors. The settlement amount you can receive depends on several factors, such as:
- The number and type of injuries you sustained
- The severity of the injury or injuries you sustained
- The impact the injuries had on your quality of life
- Who is liable for the accident
Your attorney can review this information and begin calculating the value of your claim. As mentioned above, there’s no average settlement amount in slip and fall accident cases. The amount you can receive for your case and situation depends on your lawyer’s ability to review the case details and determine what type of damages can be pursued. Their ultimate goal will be to help their client receive the maximum compensation possible for their case.
How Slip, Trip and Fall Settlements Are Calculated by Insurance Companies
When determining the damages you are entitled to in a slip and fall accident, your insurance company will often use a formula. While these formulas are beneficial, they aren’t considered hard or fixed rules. No settlement multiplier will be used in your case valuation in some situations. Even when this happens, your attorney can negotiate the final amount you receive. However, learning about these multipliers can help you learn more about what to expect.
In some cases, the insurance company will apply a multiplier to the economic costs of your injury. A multiplier is a number that ranges from 1.5 to five. While this is a subjective matter, the lower the multiplier, the less severe your injuries were. For example, if your injuries heal relatively quickly, you will experience much less pain and suffering. For example, sprained ankles will likely be applied a multiplier of 1.5, while the loss of a limb would receive a multiplier of 5.
The multiplier for your non-economic damages will be added to the economic costs of your claim. For example, if you sprained your ankle and total treatment costs were $10,000, and the multiplier is 1.5, then your slip and fall case will be worth $10,000 multiplied by 1.5. this means your non-economic damages are worth $25,000.
What Other Factors May Impact the Worth of Your Florida Slip and Fall Accident Claim
Other factors may impact your injury’s value because it impacts the multiplier, causing it to be higher or lower. For example, not every doctor will agree on the correct type of treatment. As a result, the cost for one recommended treatment may be higher or lower than another. Also, someone younger may receive more compensation than an older accident victim for a catastrophic injury because the harm caused will last much longer than the older individual. As a result, they must deal with more pain and suffering during their life.
Sometimes, an injury can significantly impact a person more than it would on someone else. An example would be a guitarist who plays for a successful band. Suppose your slip and fall injury resulted in a broken arm and the injury impacted your ability to play the guitar forever. In that case, this will be more serious and worth more compensation.
Understanding Premises Liability Claims
A slip and fall accident is a type of premises liability claim. Chances are, you have heard this term before, but you may not fully understand what it means. Based on premises liability laws, if you are injured in a slip and fall accident, you can file a claim against the owner of the property, the occupier, or the manager where your accident occurred.
Many slip and fall accidents may be caused by someone else’s negligence instead of the victim. In this case, the property owner, operator, or manager where your accident occurred will likely be liable for the incident.
If you want the best chance of a successful premise liability case, a few things must be proven with the help of your lawyer. These things include:
- That the property owner owed those on their property a duty of care.
- That this duty of care was breached in some way.
- That the breach of this duty of care resulted in injuries to the victim.
- The duty of care being breached caused the damages you experienced.
Proving that the property owner breached the duty of care they owed people visiting their property is challenging without help from a legal professional. However, the attorney you hire can often prove that the fall you experienced while on another party’s property resulted from negligence on the property owner’s part.
It’s your attorney’s job to collect evidence from the accident scene to prove that the property was in dangerous condition when you were there. Taking photos of the hazardous property condition can be beneficial. This will show the cause of the accident and be used as a source of evidence for your claim to prove the other party breached the duty they had and that this resulted in the accident.
It’s also worth noting that your attorney may have to prove that the claimant (you) were allowed to be on the property when the accident occurred and not trespassing. In this case, physical evidence like invitations and promotional flyers can serve as evidence that you had the right and permission to be on this property. Your lawyer will work to gather evidence and prove you had this right and that the property owner’s negligence caused the accident.
What Happened If You Contributed to Your Slip and Fall Injuries?
In some slip and fall situations, personal injury attorneys assume that the jury may determine that the plaintiff (victim) was partially to blame for their injuries. This is because everyone has at least some responsibility for their safety and well-being. Put simply, this means you should watch where you are going at all times.
If you were not watching where you were going, and you happened to trip and fall over something in your path, it may be concluded that you were partially to blame for your accident. The same applies to situations where you had on unsafe shoes or if you were distracted. In Florida, the name of this law is “comparative negligence.”
Comparative negligence can assign a percentage of the blame to you. An example would be that you were 50% responsible for causing your injuries and the property owner (or other defendants) was 50% to blame. In this case, your compensation would be reduced by the percentage of fault you were assigned.
Tips for Handling a Slip and Fall Case with Your Insurance Provider
In Florida, if you are seeking compensation after a slip and fall accident, it is required that you file a claim with your insurance company first. This is the law based on Florida Statute 627.7407. After your insurance company has received this claim, they will get to work to dispute it – this is how the insurance company works.
Remember, an insurance company is a business. The goal of any business is to make money and reduce the compensation paid to claimants. When you hire a slip and fall attorney, you have someone on your side who is accustomed to dealing with insurance companies. They understand how they operate and the methods they will use to dispute your claim.
With the right slip and fall attorney, you can feel confident your case is strong and that the insurance adjuster doesn’t have grounds to reduce the final settlement you receive. They will also work to make sure that you get a favorable settlement. The attorney you hire will take charge of settlement negotiations and be willing to take your case to court if necessary. Sometimes, this is the only way to get the total value of your claim.
What to Avoid After Being Injured in a Slip and Fall Accident
If you suffered an injury from a slip and fall accident, you must seek medical treatment immediately. It would be best if you got to an emergency room or seek treatment from EMS workers for more serious injuries.
After getting medical treatment, you need to file a personal injury lawsuit. You have up to four years to file a claim and to receive compensation based on Florida Statute 95.11. While four years may seem like a long time, but it’s wise to file your lawsuit as soon as possible. As more tie passes, evidence can go missing, and your memory may fade. When you file your claim right away, you will be much more likely to receive the proper amount of compensation you deserve.
It is essential to seek legal representation right away after your accident. When you hire a lawyer immediately, you can increase the possibility of getting the compensation you deserve.
Types of Damages You Can Claim After a Florida Slip and Fall Accident
When determining the value of your slip and fall case, your attorney must consider several things. In most situations, you can recover both economic and non-economic damages you have experienced because of your slip and fall accident. Some of the types of damages that you may be able to recover after a slip and fall accident in Florida include:
You will likely have to seek medical treatment if you suffer an injury because of a slip and fall accident. In this situation, the bills for your care and treatment will come to you. Most medical treatments are costly, especially if you have a more serious injury that requires long-term care. Hiring an attorney means you have someone who will examine all your medical records and determine what you have spent on care. At this point, the attorney will ensure that the total cost of your medical care is accounted for in your claim.
If you missed work because of your slip and fall accident and because of this lost income, you might be able to recover these wages via a personal injury claim. With the help of your attorney, you can file to receive past, present, and future losses resulting from your slip and fall injuries.
Pain and Suffering
This type of compensation is non-economic damage. They are more subjective when it comes to your claim value. The compensation you receive will be based on your injuries’ impact on your emotional and physical health. It may be possible to claim mental suffering like insomnia, depression, anxiety, and physical pain. For example, suppose your attorney can prove that your life quality was dramatically reduced because of your slip and fall accident. In that case, it may be possible to file a claim and recover compensation for pain and suffering.
Usually, wrongful death lawsuits are filed by the loved ones of someone killed in an accident. This includes slip and fall accidents. In this situation, the decedent’s family can claim damages, which include burial costs, the loss of the person’s income, and any medical bills the individual received before passing away.
In many situations, slip and fall cases result in the claimant (victim) receiving compensation for damages. Your lawyer will be able to provide more information about the damages you can claim for your case, and they will fight to make sure that your compensation can cover the financial losses you experienced because of the accident.
How Much Will It Cost to Hire an Attorney for Your Slip and Fall Case?
For many people, their slip and fall incident will be the first time they have had to file a lawsuit. Because of how complex the legal process may seem, the entire process can look overwhelming and daunting. Therefore, you should schedule a free consultation before hiring an attorney to handle your case. During the evaluation, you can ask any questions about your case. These consultations aim to ensure that you find the right attorney to represent your case and help you receive the compensation you deserve.