Slip and Fall Injuries on Private Property in Tennessee

Slip and Fall Injuries on Private Property in Tennessee

Slip and fall injuries describe any injury that's a result of a person falling, stumbling or slipping. The factors in these falls can include unstable terrain or flooring, wet or icy conditions, disrepair, wearing the wrong kind of shoes or even just a bit of clumsiness. Whatever the reason for these accidents, the National Flooring Safety Institute says that falls account for 21.3 percent of all emergency room visits, with 1 million of those cases involving a slip and fall. The consequences of the accidents can range from bruises and scrapes to catastrophic issues and long-term disability.

Are Property Owners Responsible for Preventing Slip and Fall Injuries?

Anyone who owns a piece of property, including homeowners and businesses, has some responsibility for ensuring that the premises is safe for other people. That responsibility is a bit heavier on business owners, who regularly invite consumers and others into their place of business, because consumers have some expectation of safety. If you invite people into your home--or if there are areas outside of your home where people might be expected to walk, such as a driveway or walkway--you should also pay attention to maintenance.
Property owners don't have a responsibility to 100 percent safeguard every person; they can't be responsible if someone acts outside of common sense, for example. However, they should:
  • Keep walkways clear of obstacles
  • Ensure flooring and sidewalks are in good repair
  • Clean up spills as quickly as possible
  • Warn people about dangerous conditions or spills with appropriate signs

What Rights Do You Have If You're Injured in a Slip and Fall?

If you're injured in a slip and fall on someone else's property, you have some legal rights. You don't have a direct right to compensation, but you do have a right to seek it. That can mean filing a claim with the appropriate insurance company, but liability insurers are rarely keen to pay out at maximum, even if you have the injuries and losses to warrant it.

Proving fault in a slip and fall case can be difficult, though. It's a very subjective area, and the burden of proof is on the plaintiff (the person who is filing the claim). You don't have the proof that the property owner purposefully caused your injury, but you do have to prove that his or her inaction or action led to your fall. Working with an experienced law firm such as Dunn Law Firm can help you make a case that is more likely to result in an award to you.

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