How much do you know about Central Florida slip and fall accident myths? Here at Pam Olsen Personal Injury, our team wants to make sure you understand all about the common misconceptions behind slip and fall cases. It is our job to make sure you are prepared!
The Top 5 Myths
- You Don’t Have a Legitimate Claim
- Accidents happen on a daily basis. However, if you slipped, fell, or were otherwise injured on someone else’s property, and the owner of said property was negligent in ensuring the safety of the premises, you may have a legitimate slip and fall claim. The area of law governing the disposition of these types of cases involves a legal theory referred to as “premises liability.” Premises liability shifts the legal responsibility to the owner or possessor of the property on which an injury occurred if certain elements are met. Generally speaking, it is in situations where the injury was directly correlated with a dangerous condition that the owner knew or should have known existed.
- A Sign Extinguishes the Owner’s Duty of Care
- It is a common misconception that merely posting a caution or warning sign enables a property owner to escape all liability in a premises liability claim. While it may be more challenging from a legal perspective to substantiate the owner’s negligence if a sign was present, it does not, on its own, dictate the validity of your slip and fall claim. For example, one of the most commonly seen signs in businesses is the yellow “CAUTION: WET FLOOR” signs. However, factors, including just how visible the sign is to visitors, may mitigate the defendant’s attempted defense.
- The Insurance Company Is on Your Side
- A quick and relatively straight-forward settlement may sound appealing in the aftermath of a slip and fall accident – but keep in mind: the insurance company does NOT work for you. Their priorities are starkly different from yours. What you might perceive as a friendly and cooperative interaction with an insurance representative is, in reality, little more than an attempt to minimize financial compensation. The quicker you can be talked into a settlement agreement, the higher likelihood there is that you are accepting a reimbursement significantly less than what is fair or equitable given the specific circumstances that led to your hardship.
- Slip and Fall Claims Last Forever
- Whether you choose to file an insurance claim or take your case to court in the form of a personal injury lawsuit, you need to keep the applicable New Jersey statute of limitations in mind when it comes to successfully navigating slip and fall litigation. A statute of limitations is a legally-mandated time cap on your right to have your case heard in the New Jersey judicial system. If you try to file your claim after the expiration of the statute of limitations, the court will likely dismiss your case entirely. According to the guidelines set forth in N.J.S.A § 2A:14-2, you must formally file your slip and fall case with the court within two years of the incident if you are seeking personal injury damages. If alternatively, you are seeking damages for property damage arising from a slip and fall case, N.J.S.A § 2A:14-2 dictates that you must file your claim within six years.
- You Can’t Recover Damages Because You Were Partially at Fault
- One of the most commonly asserted defenses from property owners in slip and fall litigation is that the injured party was partially or entirely at fault for the accident. The defendant may attempt to claim that the hazardous property condition was, or should have been, obvious. Even if you were partially to blame for the injuries you incur on the property of another, it is not a complete bar to the recovery of damages. New Jersey has adopted the “comparative negligence” approach when it comes to situations in which the responsibility for an injury is shared between the defendant and plaintiff.
Contact Us Today!
We want you to make sure you stay safe and avoid a slip and fall accident. We know all about the common myths that happen in Florida. Pamela Olsen, Attorney, and Counselor at Law, P.A., is an experienced attorney who strives to help clients with their legal issues. She has a winning history in the accident and wrongful death cases in Ocala, Florida. Call today for more information!