Winter Can Be Fun But Not For Pedestrians When Walkways Are Slippery

The onset of winter each year should alert property owners to make sure they are ready for the dangers imposed upon pedestrians by snow and ice storms.

Residential property owners will want to keep their front sidewalks safe for school children to use each morning and afternoon. Business owners will want to make sure their walkways are safe for shoppers.

Property owners who ignore these potential hazards are setting themselves up for costly judgments in slip and fall litigation in case someone falls on their icy walkway and becomes injured.

While giving that caution, slip and fall injuries on an icy sidewalk are not always recoverable. Many times property owners can be held responsible and ordered to pay damages. But it's a myth that every time you fall on an icy or snow-covered sidewalk that you are eligible for damages.

While falls often are the subjects of cartoons or comedy sitcoms, falls off the screen are no laughing matter. Falls that injure the spine and back are the most common sources of injuries in the United States. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths in older Americans. In fact, one of every three people 65 and older falls each year. Falls also are the leading cause of non-fatal injuries to children up to age 14, causing 2.5 million emergency room visits each year.

"Slip and fall" is a term used for an injury which occurs when someone slips, trips or falls as a result of a dangerous or hazardous condition on someone else's property. Water, ice or snow, an abrupt change in flooring or a walkway, poor lighting or a hidden hazard might cause the fall.

"Slip and fall" cases fall under a broader category known as "premises liability." Under the premises liability area of law, property owners and businesses have a duty to provide a safe environment and if they fail to do so, and someone is injured as a result, they may be held liable for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages."

But you must prove that the property owner knew or should have known about the hazard and that he had a reasonable amount of time to correct the hazard but failed to do so. In the case of an overnight winter storm, the property owner may not be liable if a reasonable amount of time to clear the walkway had not passed.

Generally the law does not require a property owner to remove ice or snow that accumulates outside the building as a result of weather. But if an unnatural accumulation of ice or snow occurs, then the owner can be liable.

And if a snow removal service is employed, the owner can be held liable if negligence can be proved. So many issues are involved with a slip and fall on an icy walkway that an attorney should be hired to review the facts.

There is no precise formula that can be used to determine when the property owner is responsible if you slip or trip. Each case turns on whether the property owner acted carefully so that slipping was unlikely to happen and whether you were careless in not seeing or avoiding the condition that caused your fall. That's why you must seek the advice of an attorney who can make that determination for you.

The doctrine of "comparative negligence" often applies in "slip and fall" cases, and that generates another set of issues to be explored by legal counsel. The comparative negligence standard looks at whether the victim had a legitimate reason to be at the place where the hazard existed, if a careful person could have observed and avoided the hazard, if any warnings existed, and if the victim was distracted.

An attorney who specializes in personal injury law will make sure the victim obtains necessary and timely medical consultation and will help you preserve the valuable evidence about what caused the injury. A knowledgeable "slip and fall" attorney also will make sure the lawsuit is filed on time, which is very important. For instance, if you fall on a sidewalk owned by a municipality you might have less than 90 days to file a claim.

I trust this information is useful to property owners and victims alike. As someone who enjoys winter, I urge everyone to get out and enjoy skiing, snowmobiling, hikes in the woods, or just an exercise walk down the street. But don't spoil your winter fun by not watching for patches of ice or other slippery spots on drives and walkways.

About the author:
Terry Cochran, senior partner in Cochran, Foley & Associates, P.C., a Michigan law firm specializing in personal liability, medical malpractice, and SSD/SSI appeals. Cochran does not represent insurance companies or corporations but instead bases his practice upon representing individuals and families.

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Filing A Slip And Fall Lawsuit Involving Ice and Snow

First, you should take pictures of the site where the accident took place. Your health is priority. If you are hospital ridden or literally in too much pain to go yourself to take pictures of the site, send one to take the pictures for you. The pictures should reflect the dangerous condition. It would be helpful to take shots from various distances and angles. Show surroundings including businesses or any other landmarks that can be around the site the accident took place.

Taking pictures of the injuries you suffered is definitely important as well. It shows the pain and physical suffering you have endured during the slip and fall accident.

Secondly, you should gather police statements or any recollections you have about the accident. Your recollection should surround certain questions such as: what were the conditions when you fell? Was there efficient lighting to see? Was the snow freshly fallen or was it dated as if it has not been shoved? What type of shoes were you wearing? A shoe that does not have proper traction for the weather and or ice?

Third, You should get written medical statements from doctors, which you have seen due to the accident. The doctor should describe the pain and findings he has found. He/she should add their contact information on every statement that is written.

Lastly, you should contact a slip and fall attorney as soon as you can. When dealing with New York slip and fall cases, the defendant is often referred to as a municipal defendant. Municipal defendants have special protection under the law. If the defendant happens to have a municipality, you have to make sure you promptly notify them of the claim you intended on filing. In New York State, their is a time limit for notifying defendants with municipal defendants and usually you have to notify there defendants within 90 days, but in some cases this can be limited to 60 days.

Get more information regarding slip and fall attorneys in new york

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Car Accident Injury Claims- More Accidents More Claims

Author: Blake Alden

Population in the universe is in the raise every year, so is the increase of cars, driving license holders, accidents and car accident injury claims. Increase in cars eventually places people in danger with the fast moving and congested traffic. Ultimate result is frequent car accidents, damages, injuries and losses. Inevitable net consequence is drastic increase in car accident injury claims.

No two car accidents are similar, they are unique in nature. Car crash, car wreck and car collision are some of types of car accidents. Further, collision with another car or any other vehicle, lamp post, trees or buildings takes place when the driver looses control over his vehicle. Car accidents are also named as road traffic accidents, traffic collisions, auto accidents, road accidents, motor vehicle accidents and personal injury collisions. Whatever is the name or type of accident, it is the car accident injury claims that play the important role of getting the benefit of compensation to the victim. Car accidents occur owing to a range of reasons like bad road design, vehicle design, under maintained vehicles or driver behaviors.

Car accident injuries affect various parts of the human body. Some of serious injuries are head injuries that may damage the brain, neck injury may result in whiplash injury, back injury that may damage cervical discs and injury to limbs. Car accident injury claim can be made for any of these car accident injuries. However injury claim can be made for minor injuries that also do take place in car accidents.

Insurance for all vehicles are compulsory and the injured has every right for a compensation claim, hence the suffered person should pursue car accident injury claim without any hesitation. Injury claim not only covers the personal injury to the sufferer it also covers loss of income if any because of accident, repair charges of damaged car, hiring charges of replacement car, compensation for pain and suffering resulted in the accident and medical expenses incurred for treatment of injury.

It is important to collect details of evidence for a successful accident injury claim. Most important is to exchange details like name, address, telephone number, car insurance details of accident involved cars and insurance policy number with the opponent. If a witness is available collect his name address and other contact details, photograph of the accident scene if possible, sketch of accident location and any other details that could support as evidence. These details will establish that the accident was due to opponent's fault and help to pursue the car accident injury claims to get maximum benefit.

Pursuing injury claim is a complicated process involving legal procedures. These procedures need to be handled meticulously and followed for a successful claim. Hiring a solicitor who is a specialist in car accident injury claims will be the best option to deal with the case. Preferably entering into a 'no win no fee' contract with the lawyer will be more beneficial. Even though the solicitor give full confidence of winning the case, in the event of the opponent layer outwits, the case may be lost. Under such circumstances also there will not be any lawyer's fee.

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About the Author

Car accident injury claims are on the high and you need all sorts of proof like photographs, sketches, medical certificate etc to make your claim a winning claim.