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Slip and Fall Compensation Amounts Legally Explained in 2024

In a slip and fall accident, you may be entitled to various types of compensation, known as damages, depending on circumstances including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, property damage, loss of enjoyment, and punitive damages.
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

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What is a Slip and Fall?

According to FindLaw, "Slip and fall" is a legal term referring to an incident where an individual is injured on someone else's property [1]. These cases fall under premises liability claims, which hold property owners responsible for injuries caused by hazardous conditions on their premises.

Slip and fall accidents can occur due to various dangerous conditions, such as torn carpeting, changes in flooring, poor lighting, narrow stairs, wet floors, or broken sidewalks. Outdoor slip and fall incidents can be caused by weather conditions like rain, ice, or snow, as well as other ground obstructions like potholes.

For a slip and fall case to be valid, the plaintiff must have suffered an injury, no matter how minor, as a result of the hazardous condition. Injuries can range from minor cuts and bruises to more serious injuries like broken bones or traumatic brain injuries.

While serious injuries might allow for the recovery of greater damages, an injured person can claim minor harm as well. The ensuing medical treatment bills will be a basis for claiming economic damages or actual financial harm.

Also Read: Typical Slip and Fall Settlement

Who is Liable in a Slip and Fall Accident?

According to Edward Friedman, the party who could have prevented your injury is typically liable in a premises liability case [2]. This could be the property owner or occupier, such as a business leasing a space.

During the review of your case, your attorney will likely narrow down the list of potentially liable parties and confirm the primarily liable party. The investigation's goal is to gather evidence supporting your claim and proving the factors necessary to recover compensation.

These factors may include:

  • The foreseeability of your presence on the property.
  • The property owner's (or another liable party's) knowledge or should have known about a hazard but failed to address, clean (e.g., a spill or leak), repair (e.g., broken flooring or steps), or adequately warn you about it.
  • Their negligence directly caused your fall and resulting injuries.

Once you have enough evidence to understand who the liable party is, your attorney will look into their insurance coverage and identify the policy that will cover your damages if you reach a settlement or secure a court award.

What Damages Could I Be Awarded in a Slip and Fall Accident?

In a slip and fall accident, you may be entitled to damages, including:

  • Medical Expenses: Compensation for past and future medical expenses related to your injuries, including hospital bills, doctor visits, medication costs, and therapy expenses.
  • Lost Wages: If your injuries prevent you from working, you may be compensated for the income you lost during your recovery. This can include both current and future lost wages if your injuries result in long-term or permanent disability.
  • Pain and Suffering: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress caused by your injuries. This can include compensation for the discomfort, anxiety, and stress you experienced as a result of the accident.
  • Property Damage: If your personal belongings were damaged in the accident (e.g., clothing, jewelry, electronic devices), you may be compensated for the cost of repair or replacement.
  • Loss of Enjoyment: Compensation for the loss of enjoyment of life caused by your injuries. This can include the inability to participate in activities or hobbies you once enjoyed due to your injuries.
  • Punitive Damages: In some cases, the court may award punitive damages to punish the negligent party for particularly reckless or egregious behavior. These damages are intended to deter similar conduct in the future.

It's important to note that the specific damages you may be entitled to will depend on the laws in your jurisdiction and the facts of your case. It's advisable to consult with a personal injury attorney to understand your rights and options for seeking compensation.

Also Read: Slip & Fall: Will It Go to Trial?

Slip and Fall Accident Statistics

  • Fall fatalities are distributed almost equally between men and women, but women are more likely to experience slip-and-fall accidents. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that falls accounted for 5% of job-related fatalities for women and 11% for men.
  • Over 8 million emergency room visits are due to falls, making it the leading cause of ER visits at 21.3%. Slips and falls specifically account for over 1 million visits or 12% of all fall-related ER visits. Fractures occur in 5% of all fall cases and are among the most severe consequences.
  • While slips and falls are not the primary cause of fatal occupational injuries, they are the primary reason for lost workdays. They are also the top cause of workers’ compensation claims, especially for individuals aged 55 and older.
  • According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), floors and flooring materials contribute to over 2 million fall injuries annually. Half of all accidental deaths at home result from falls, mostly at ground level.
  • Hip fractures are the most serious type of fracture from falls, leading to significant health issues and deaths. Among the elderly, one in three over 65 experiences a fall annually, and half of these are repeat incidents.
  • In 2005, over 15,000 people over 65 died from falls, up from 7,700 a decade earlier. Falls are the second leading cause of injury-related death for those aged 65-84 and the leading cause for those 85 and older.
  • Incidence of falls increases with age, with 60% of fall-related deaths involving those over 75. Falls account for 87% of fractures in this age group and are a major cause of spinal cord and brain injuries.
  • In nursing homes, falls are responsible for 40% of admissions and are the sixth leading cause of death among those over 70. Over 60% of nursing home residents experience a fall annually.
  • Every year, 30% of people over 65 suffer a fall, and 10% of these result in serious injuries. The majority of fall fatalities, 67%, occur in those over 75.
  • In the workplace, slips on slick floors account for 85% of worker’s compensation claims, costing approximately $70 billion annually. Falls are the leading cause of compensable injury in the trucking industry.

Source: National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI) [3].

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References:

1. https://www.findlaw.com/injury/torts-and-personal-injuries/slip-and-fall-accidents-overview.html
2. https://nfsi.org/nfsi-research/quick-facts/
3. https://www.friedmansimon.com/faqs/who-is-liable-in-a-slip-and-fall-accident