The Cassidy Law Firm Blog

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Proving Liability in a Slip and Fall Case

Being injured in a slip and fall can be a jarring and life-altering experience. Not only are you left with the pain of your injuries, but you will likely find yourself facing continuous medical care and follow—up treatment, there will be medical bills piling up, you may not be able to participate in all of the activities you used to enjoy, and so much more. Fortunately, there is a way you can seek compensation for the harm you have suffered. A slip and fall claim is a type of premises liability claim which seeks to hold property owners accountable for the harm dangerous conditions on their properties may have caused to visitors. In order to bring a successful slip and fall claim, however, you must be able to prove liability. This can be a difficult, but not impossible, feat to achieve.

Proving Liability in a Slip and Fall Case

In order to prove liability in a slip and fall claim, you will need to be able to prove negligence on the part of the property owner. The elements of negligence are:

  • Duty: the property owner owed you a duty
  • Breach: the property breached this duty
  • Causation: the breach of the duty was the direct and proximate cause of your injuries
  • Damages: the breach of the duty caused you to suffer harm and other losses

Property owners owe visitors a duty of care. They must keep the property reasonably free of hazardous conditions. Reasonableness will be key in proving liability in your slip and fall claim. If it is reasonable to expect that the property owner could have and should have known about the hazardous property condition and made the condition reasonably safe, then negligence may be established.

The decision-maker, such as the jury, in your slip and fall case will look to what is considered to be reasonable under the circumstances presented in your specific case. In order to evaluate this, some questions that may be asked include:

  • How long was the hazard present on the property?
  • Did the property owner have sufficient time to remedy the dangerous condition?
  • Should the property owner have known about the dangerous condition? Did the owner know about the dangerous property condition?
  • Was there a legitimate reason for the presence of the hazardous condition?
  • If there was a legitimate reason for the presence of the hazardous condition, was there a safer way to limit the potential danger without too much expense or inconvenience?
  • Was there sufficient lighting and notice of the hazard to both see it and avoid it?
  • You see, property owners have a duty to keep their property reasonably free of hazards. This does not mean they will be responsible for every harm caused on their property. They will only be held responsible if the hazard was something they knew about or could have been reasonably expected to know about and they did not try to remedy the situation in a timely manner.

    New Jersey Personal Injury Attorneys

    Have you been injured on the property of another? Talk to the personal injury attorneys at Cassidy Law Firm about your options for recovering full and fair compensation for the harm you have suffered. Contact us today.

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