When you visit a store, go shopping, enter a place of business or simply go for a walk, you probably do not consider those to be risky activities. Even while doing things that are not inherently dangerous, you could be facing certain hazards that are beyond your control. In some cases, these hazards could result in a slip-and-fall accident that could leave innocent individuals with serious injuries.
If you slipped and fell in a public place, you may assume that your accident was the result of your own clumsiness or inattentiveness. In reality, you could be the victim of factors far beyond your control, including slippery floors and other types of unmarked hazards. You may wonder who or what is truly to blame for your accident and what you can do to pick up the pieces and move forward.
Determining blame and proving fault
Identifying the factors that contributed to a slip-and-fall accident and who is to blame for them is not easy. Missouri property owners have a specific responsibility of ensuring there are no hazards present on the property that could result in the avoidable injury of a visitor. However, not every slip-and-fall accident is necessarily grounds for a claim. Some of the factors considered in a premises liability claim include:
- Conditions of the property
- Actions of both the owner and the visitor
- How property is typically used
- If the injured party is a child or a trespasser
- Whether both parties share blame for the fall
- Foreseeability of the accident
If you choose to file a claim, a court will look carefully at the details of the situation in order to determine if you were the victim of negligent maintenance or other preventable factors.
After your accident
It is helpful to take quick action after a fall to learn of the legal options available to you, as this will help with the preservation of important evidence. A slip-and-fall accident could leave you with injuries that may require expensive and extensive medical treatment, and an assessment of your case will help you understand if you have grounds to pursue justice through the civil claims process. Your accident may not be your fault, and there are ways you can hold the responsible parties accountable.