Our Michigan slip and fall injury lawyers represent clients in premises liability lawsuits. Premises liability is a legal phrase that refers to the negligence of a property owner for failing to make premises reasonable safe for its visitors and guests. A lawsuit filed for a slip and fall injury or other injury on a property is called a "Premises Liability Lawsuit."
The most common types of slip and fall lawsuits are for people injured in a grocery store, department store, restaurant, mall, or other retail businesses. The most common reasons that a person may fall at a store includes wet floors, slippery substances on store floors, water, melted snow or ice, spilled or smashed items, and other spilled liquids. Many accidents are caused by falling merchandise from overhead shelves and displays.
Cases can also be filed for a person injured on private property, like a home or residence, at a place of business, or at an apartment complex. Many injuries occur in parking lots, sidewalks, or other areas outside of a premises. Other injuries occur due to defective steps and stairways either inside or outside of a building.
What is a Slip and Fall Accident Case?
A slip and fall accident case is a type of premises liability claim. Under Michigan law, property owners are legally required to maintain their property in a reasonably safe condition for people who are lawfully on their premise. Trespassers are not entitled to the same legal protections.
What is Needed to Prove and Win a Michigan Slip and Fall Lawsuit?
Under Michigan law, the injured person must prove four things to win a slip and fall lawsuit. These are:
(1) That the proprty owner owed a legal duty owned to make the premises safe for the plaintiff ;
(2) That the property violated that duty by having a dangerous condition on the premises;
(3) That an injury resulted from the dangerous condition;
(4) That the injured person suffered damages, such as pain and suffering, disability, and medical expenses.
Legal Defenses in Slip and Fall Accident Cases
Individuals suffering injuries in a Michigan slip and fall accident case do have legal rights and may be able to pursue a claim against the property owner for their injuries. Legal defenses used by property owners to avoid paying a settlement or judgement include that the injured was a trespasser or that the owner did not have notice that a dangerous condition existed. Defendants also argue that the injured person was also negligent for failing to see or avoid a hazard.
Michigan courts have also applied the "open and obvious defense" to slip and fall cases. This defense argues the defendant doens not have the duty to protect a a person from a condition that is so open and obvious that an invitee could expected to discover it on his or her own. Courts have dismissed cases on these grounds but there are many exceptions to this defense. Our lawyers will fully investigate your case and gather facts to prove you are entitled to a settlement.
What To Do After A Slip and Fall Accident
If you or someone you know suffered injuries due to a slip and fall incident at a retail store or building it is very important that you report the accident to the store manager or other store personnel immediately after the occurrence. If possible, take photographs of any conditions that caused the fall.
When filing a report, you should ensure that whoever is taking the report takes a written report that should include the date and time of fall injury, the condition that caused the fall, the names of any eyewitnesses or store employees with knowledge of the accident, and a description of the injury or physical complaints of the injured customer. In addition, you should ensure the included in the written report is also a picture of the defective condition. These will all act as important and excellent evidence in the future when filing a claim and proving liability for your Michigan slip and fall accident lawsuit.
If you are contacted by an insurance adjuster for the property owner, it is best not to speak to that person until you have consulted with an experienced slip and fall lawyer. The adjuster may tape record your statement and later use it against you in a lawsuit to have your case dismissed.
Contact Your Michigan Premises Liability Lawyer
For more information after your slip and fall injury accident, call our top rated Michigan premises liability attorneys now at (800) 606-1717. Our lawyers have significant experience in these types of cases and a track record of obtaining sizeable settlements for our injured clients. We also offer a No Win No Fee Promise, which means no legal fees or costs until we win or settle your case. If your case is unsuccessful for any reason, you owe us nothing.