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Trip-And-Fall Cases

People during their regular day will take thousands of steps. They will walk in department stores and restaurants. Especially in New York City, we walk everywhere. Unfortunately, not all surfaces are safe, free of defects or clean. If you fall and sustain a physical injury, you should remember where you fell. It is often helpful to take a picture of the defect. For example, if you fall in a stairway, remember which step you fell on. If you have a cellphone camera, take a picture. If people come to assist you, get their names and phone numbers.

Trip-and-fall cases require immediate and swift investigation. It is therefore critical that you call an accident or personal injury attorney like me, David Ascher. Again, fast and thorough investigation is important because owners of the place where you fell can quickly clean up or fix the cause of your accident. A good investigation for trip-and-fall cases is often not limited to taking pictures, but also obtaining statements of witnesses. All this is critical to maximize your personal injury settlement.

Time Is Of The Essence In A Trip-And-Fall Case

Quick story. A man one evening was walking and tripped on a defect. He called two days later, and the day he called, we went together and took pictures of the defect. Within a few days, the client called me and told me it was fixed. Fast response is critical.

As an injured person you should be aware of the law that governs trip and fall cases. To obtain a recovery in an accident, the plaintiff must demonstrate that the defendant was negligent. The definition of negligence is the failure to maintain a premises in a reasonably safe or clean condition. To obtain a recovery in a trip-and-fall case, one must first determine who or what is the negligent person, company or entity. Often that is the owners of a premises. As your personal injury attorney, I will undertake a thorough investigation to find out exactly who is responsible for your personal injury.

It is necessary to have an understanding of the law. The law states that a homeowner, or owners or premises owner can only be held liable or responsible for paying a personal injury claim if he was negligent. Negligence means that the defendant knew about the condition; enough time to correct the condition and failed to do so. The defendant can also be held negligent if the defendant should have known about the condition or had sufficient time to become aware of the condition that caused the accident. Finally, the defendant can be held responsible if the he or she created the condition which caused the accident. In the courts and in discussing these types of cases we often refer to this as “actual notice” and “constructive notice.”  Actual notice is when the defendant actually knew about the condition which caused the accident. Constructive notice is when the condition was present for a long enough period of time that the owner should have known. At time of trial, the plaintiff has the burden of proving “notice.” Therefore, good investigation is critical.

Often, pictures and testimony are not enough to prove a case. Experts should as professional engineer must be hired. An expert can explain technical problems with the defect, identify building code violations or other violations to help establish negligence.

Learn How I Can Help

The defendant will often argue that they did not have “notice” of the condition. They will argue that the defect is too small or “de minimis” and therefore not a case. The defendant will argue that the defect was “open and obvious.” Therefore, as your personal injury attorney, I work hard to refute or shoot down their defenses. Call my firm, The Law Offices of David Ascher, at 212-964-1515 or email me if you have any questions about trip-and-fall cases.

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