Slip and Fall Accident Attorneys in Vero Beach
Property owners expect that the people who use their buildings are there to buy goods, to meet with professionals or other groups, or to do other things that benefit the property owner in some way. Many property owners also allow people to visit or pass through their property such as apartment owners or shopping malls. These owners know that the customers and visitors are focused on their needs and not on watching every step. Most owners benefit financially from these people. That’s why when a Vero Beach slip and fall accident occurs, the owners should be liable – if they didn’t put safety first.
At Lulich & Attorneys, we hold property owners accountable if they design their property without keeping safety in mind. Our personal injury lawyers hold them liable if someone falls and is hurt because they didn’t inspect their property or didn’t respond to complaints about wet floors, loose railings, or other dangers. Our lawyers have a strong track record of successfully settling cases for the full amount of your pain and suffering, medical bills, and lost wages. We understand how traumatic head trauma, spinal cord damage, broken bones, and other injuries are.
Victims often include seniors, shoppers, and pedestrians near construction sites. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 800,000 people who fall each year need ER care for hip fractures and other injuries.
In what ways does an experienced Vero Beach slip and fall attorney fight for his clients?
At Lulich & Attorneys, we’ve been fighting for slip and fall victims for 35 years. Some of the ways we work to prove liability and show just how much your injuries affect every aspect of your life are:
- We send investigators to examine the property where you fell. This includes taking photos and/or videos, speaking with witnesses, and reviewing what steps could have been taken to prevent the accident.
- Our lawyers question all relevant witnesses
- We work with your doctors to fully document and explain your medical diagnosis, your future medical needs, your pain and suffering, and all other medical issues
- We request that the property owners disclose all prior complaints or notices to show they were aware of the dangerous situation on their property
- Our legal team works with your employer to document all your income losses
- We work to show the property owner failed to install cameras and take other security measures
We also examine if there were any building code violations.
What are the stages of your Vero Beach slip and fall case?
First, you need to make sure you see the right doctors for your injuries and follow through with their recommendations. We generally don’t try to settle your claim until your medical situation has stabilized. In Vero Beach slip and fall cases we:
- Send out investigators
- Identify all responsible parties
- File complaints on your behalf
- Conduct extensive discovery -written and oral questions of those people with knowledge about your accident and injuries
- Negotiate with the insurance adjusters
- Prepare your case for arbitration or trial if the case does not settle
What is the property owner’s duty of care to people who visit their property?
Property owners have a duty to work with building inspectors when they design their buildings. They should conduct regular inspections of their property and fix any dangerous situations they see or know about. Alternatively, they should warn customers and visitors of any known dangers.
The duty of care the property owner owes to people on their premises depends on the reason the person is on the property:
- Invitees. Anyone who enters property to benefit the property owner – such as to buy food, obtain professional services, or participate in a charity function – is owed the highest duty of care by the property owner.
- Licensees. Anyone who has permission to be on the property, but isn’t there to benefit the property owner, still has the right to be protected from known property defects. A common example is that a member of a community has the right to walk on safe sidewalks.
- Trespassers. Property owners don’t owe a duty of care to people who do not have a right to be on their property.
- Children trespassers. There is one exception to the trespasser rule known as the “attractive nuisance doctrine. Florida does permit the parents of children who are injured to file a personal injury claim – if the injury is due to a lack of safety of items children might want to explore – like swimming pools and trampolines.
What are the causes of Vero Beach slip and fall accidents?
Slip and fall accidents usually occur for one of the following reasons:
- Spilled liquids from leaks, beverages, rain, and other sources
- Broken tiles
- Railings that are loose
- Defective escalators
- Surfaces that are uneven
- Carpets that are torn
- Snow and ice
- Poor lighting – making seeing difficult
- Lack of ramps or defective lamps
- Uneven stairs
- Negligent security – especially in places where money is exchanged
- Objects on the floor
What types of places in Vero Beach do slip and fall accidents occur?
Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere including public and private sites. They can happen at for-profit and non-profit locations. Slips and falls often occur at:
- Apartment complexes
- Motels and hotels
- Coops and condominiums
- Retail stores
- Neighborhood sidewalks
- Professional offices
- Hospitals and health clinics
- Government offices such as xxx
- Many other Vero Beach locations
Who is responsible for a slip and fall accident?
Our Vero Beach slip and fall lawyers file claims against everyone who caused the accident including one or more of the following:
- The property owner and any related companies such as a parent company
- The building architects, engineers, and contractors
- Maintenance companies
- Repair businesses
Even if you are partially at fault for an accident, you still can file a claim. The damage award reduces by the amount of your fault.
What types of injuries do Vero Beach slip and fall victims suffer?
Some of the injuries slip and fall accident victims suffer are permanent injuries. Other injuries may heal but only after months of therapy and time. Common slip and fall injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). According to the Mayo Clinic, a TBI occurs when the head suffers a forceful blow. TBIs may cause bruises, bleeding, loss of oxygen to the brain, torn tissue, and other injuries. Severe complications may cause death. Traumatic brain injuries often can’t be diagnosed immediately. Many victims may show minimal symptoms at first. If a victim has symptoms, a family member or friend may have to suggest they see a doctor. If you strike your head, even if you think it’s a minor blow, you need to get it checked out by an emergency doctor immediately. Survivors often suffer a loss of some cognitive function in addition to suffering physical and emotional pain. Many victims need continual care with many different types of doctors and therapists.
- Spinal cord injuries. Severe damage to the spinal cord can cause partial or full paralysis. Some spinal cord injury victims may improve with a spinal cord stimulator. Spinal cord injuries are often life-threatening. Many spinal cord injury victims have a lifetime of pain. A severe spinal cord injury can cost a fortune to treat – in just the first year. Generally, quadriplegia (full paralysis) is caused to an injury to the upper spinal cord. Lower spinal cord injuries tend to cause paraplegia which is a paralysis of the lower limbs. Some victims are lucky enough to have milder symptoms.
The Florida Department of Health has a Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Program (BSCIP) which is “primarily funded by the Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Program Trust Fund, as outlined in section 381.79, Florida Statutes.” The program is a last resort program for Florida residents who suffer these injuries.
- Broken bones. Many slip and fall victims break bones in their arm or hand as they try to catch themselves. Victims may also fracture their hip or suffer a broken leg or foot when they fall. Some broken bones such as compound fractures that penetrate the skin may require surgery. The bones of older slip and fall injury victims like those who live in Vero Beach often take a long time to heal
- Back pain. Many slip and fall injury victims injure their back. Back injuries may include disc damage and nerve damage. Many victims with back pain live with unbearable chronic pain for the rest of their lives.
- Soft tissue injuries. These injuries may not appear for a few days or even weeks after the slip and fall. Examples include a sprained wrist or a sprained ankle. Severe soft tissue injuries can cause ligament and tendon tears. It’s important to seek treatment right away for soft tissue injuries to reduce the risk of chronic pain. Soft tissue injuries can take a long time to heal.
- Cuts, lacerations, and bruises. It’s common for a slip and fall victim to bleed due to cuts and lacerations. Bruises and swelling are quite common. Victims may require stitches. Severe cuts and related wounds may indicate other health problems.
- A damaged knee. One of the toughest injuries to manage in a Vero Beach slip and fall case is damage to your knee. Victims may partially or completely tear their ACL or MCL. Arthroscopic surgery may be required. Victims may need months or even a year to fully heal depending on the type of tear and the severity of the tear.
- Shoulder Dislocation and Muscle Strains. If you fall on your shoulder or wrench your shoulder when you fall, you may dislocate your shoulder or, at best, suffer a strained shoulder. The Mayo Clinic states that if you dislocate your shoulder “your upper arm bone pops out of the cup-shaped socket that's part of your shoulder blade. The shoulder is the body's most mobile joint, which makes it susceptible to dislocation. If you suspect a dislocated shoulder, seek prompt medical attention. Most people regain full shoulder function within a few weeks. However, once you've had a dislocated shoulder, your joint may become unstable and be prone to repeat dislocations.” Some slip and fall victims who suffer a shoulder dislocation may require surgery and extensive physical therapy.
Some slip and fall victims may suffer damage to their internal organs. Vero Beach slip and fall victims may also need to have sessions with a psychologist.
What medical treatments do Vero Beach accident victims need?
Victims of slip and fall accidents often need surgery to repair their injuries. Depending on the type of injury, slip and fall victims may also need to treat with:
- Orthopedic doctors
- Pain management doctors
- Physical therapists
- Rehabilitative therapists
What compensation demands can you make if you are hurt in a slip and fall accident in Vero Beach?
If you’re injured in a premises liability case, you can seek damages for the following:
- Medical bills. This damage category includes hospital and ambulatory surgery center costs. Medical bills include the bills submitted by your physicians, the ambulance squad, the anesthesiologist, your family doctor, all types of specialists such as orthopedic and pain management doctors, physical therapy, vocational therapy, and psychologists. Medical bills also include the cost of any medical devices such as prosthetics and wheelchairs. You can also demand payment for all the off-the-counter and prescription medications you need.
- Lost income. Whether you’re a salaried employee, an independent contractor, have a partnership, or run any type of business – you’re entitled to the income you lose due to your injuries. Damages include all the money you lose from the time of the accident through the date of settlement or the trial. Damages also include future losses (losses after the settlement or trial) that are due to your injuries. We work with your employer and financial professionals to verify your income loss.
- Pain and suffering. Every injury causes some physical pain. Severe injuries may cause chronic pain that lasts a lifetime. Pain and suffering also includes any loss of function such as not being able to get a good night’s sleep because you can’t rest on your broken arm or not being able to drive because your right foot is in a cast. In addition to the physical pain and loss of function, Vero Beach slip and fall accident victims can claim compensation for the emotional suffering that accompanies your injuries. Emotional suffering includes worries about whether your injuries will heal, concerns about how your injuries are affecting your loved ones, and many other worries.
- Loss of consortium. You and your spouse can both claim compensation because you can’t be intimate with your spouse during the recovery.
- Scarring and disfigurement. If you have scars or any type of disfigurement due to a slip and fall accident, you can claim damages for those injuries – especially if the scars or disfigurement are visible.
- Punitive damages. If a business knew that the area where you fell needed repairs and they refused to make the repairs because they wanted to save money, the business can be held liable for punitive damages. Punitive damages are meant to send a message to a business or person who wantonly or maliciously fails to protect you. The payment is made to you, the plaintiff. The purpose of punitive damages is to force the defendant to fix the current problem and take proactive steps to prevent future problems.
If you suffered any property damage you may be entitled to payment for that damage. For example, if your cellphone breaks when you fall, you can demand payment to replace the smartphone.
If a parent, child, or spouse dies due to a slip and fall (for example they fall and hit their head on the floor), then the family members can file a wrongful death action against the property owner and any other responsible parties. Our Vero Beach personal injury lawyers file wrongful death actions. We demand compensation for the following wrongful death damages permitted by Florida law:
- The funeral and burial costs
- Any medical bills of the decedent
- The loss of services and support the decedent would have provided the family members had he/she lived
- The value of the deceased’s companionship and protection
- The mental pain and suffering of the eligible family members
- Children may be compensated for the value of being deprived of their parent’s guidance and instruction.
- The income and benefits the deceased would have reasonably earned had/she survived that would have been left for the eligible beneficiaries
Talk to a respected Vero Beach slip and fall attorney today
Slip and Fall Accidents are one of the most common liability claims. If you fell or a family member died due to a slip and fall contact an experienced lawyer at Lulich & Attorneys want you to be informed and protected! We handle all slip and fall accident cases on a contingency fee basis. You can reach us in Vero Beach at (772) 589-5500 or use our contact form to schedule an appointment.