You were walking in a store, restaurant, hotel, or other private establishment and slipped and fell. Whether it was due to a spilled drink, a recently mopped floor, a leaky roof, a broken step, or a loose rug, the damage is done.
You’re now in serious pain, you may be unable to work for weeks or even months, and you’re probably facing expensive medical bills. It’s easy to feel lost during a time like this, but you can take a few important steps that protect your health and your right to compensation.
After a slip and fall accident, there are three things you absolutely must do:
- Get medical attention
- Report the accident to a manager or the owner of the premises
- Call a lawyer
Why Is It So Important to Report a Slip and Fall Accident?
If you pursue compensation for your slip and fall injuries, the business where the accident occurred and its insurance provider will both want proof that your injuries actually happened as a result of the slip and fall when and where you claim it occurred. If you never actually report the slip and fall, or if you wait too long to do so, your claim will be viewed with more skepticism, and that can mean less money or even an outright denial.
In addition, reporting a slip and fall accident can help highlight missing safety measures. For example, a business may not be in the habit of putting up wet floor signs after mopping, or it may be putting off repairing a broken step. When you bring safety hazards to the attention of managers or owners, you can help save others from suffering similar injuries in the future.
How Do You Report a Slip and Fall Accident?
The manner that you actually report your accident depends on your type and severity of injury. If you’re seriously injured, you may not have the chance to do anything except call 911 or have someone else call it for you.
Then, your biggest priority is simply getting to the hospital to receive treatment. However, it’s still important to report the accident to the business where it occurred as soon as possible, even if that means ensuring that a loved one does so on your behalf.
If your injury didn’t require immediate medical attention, report the injury to a manager or the owner before you leave the scene. In many businesses, customer injuries are taken seriously, which means you may need to give a statement and an accident report will be filed. This can help protect you when it comes to file a compensation claim, as it creates concrete proof that you were hurt because of the establishment’s negligence.
Avoid These Common Mistakes After a Slip and Fall
The three steps outlined above are the most important things to do after a slip and fall accident, but there are also many things you SHOULDN’T do:
- Admit fault—If you slipped and fell, it’s extremely unlikely it was your fault. That’s especially true if the floor was wet, the step was broken, or the rug was loose.
- Say “sorry”—Many people dislike inconveniencing others, and it can feel that way if employees have to tend to you after a fall. But saying sorry can be construed as an admission of fault.
- Leave without speaking up—Many people also dislike “making a scene,” and they may feel embarrassed after a slip and fall. But if you get up and leave, your chances of getting compensation may drop to zero.
- Exaggerate or downplay your injuries—Always be honest about the severity of your pain and injuries. If the insurance company discovers you lied, it may refuse to pay you a settlement.
- Pursue compensation alone—Many establishments are well protected against slip and fall claims. Without a lawyer on your side, you’re fighting an uphill battle.
Our Lawyers Know Slip and Fall Accident Claims
Slip and fall injuries can be extremely painful and debilitating. The last thing you need is a battle with the establishment and its insurance company to get compensated for your accident-related expenses. Instead, you need time to focus on your recovery. That’s where we come in.
At Wagner Reese, our Indianapolis slip and fall lawyers will build a claim on your behalf, while you focus on getting better. We have many years of experience winning slip and fall injury claims for victims like you, and we know what it takes to win. Contact us today for a free consultation.