You’ve slipped on a wet floor in a restaurant and sustained an injury in the resulting fall. Now, what do you do? At Sette & Parnoff, PC, we’re glad you asked. We have more than 45 years of experience handling slips and falls, and we can help you with the next steps.
Get Medical Attention
Your priority after a slip and fall accident – or any kind of accident – should be seeking treatment. Whether you hit your head, broke a bone, or feel fine, you should go to an emergency room or urgent care center to get checked out. If you’d prefer, you can also make an appointment with your regular doctor, but keep in mind some providers don’t handle “trauma,” and injuries from accidents are typically considered traumatic. Additionally, you may feel okay but have a hidden injury. Head injuries, for example, do not always emerge right away, but immediate treatment can help you identify the injury and prevent further damage. Head injuries can also be life threatening so it is important to get checked out immediately.
When you talk to doctors and nurses, be specific about your symptoms and mention any ailments you may have – nothing is too small.
Report Your Accident
If you are injured at a shop or restaurant, make sure you report your accident and injury to management and ask for a copy of any report they file. If police officers, firefighters, or paramedics respond to your accident, be clear about what happened, avoid speculation, write down any badge numbers you see, and ask for a copy of the emergency report.
Before you leave the scene of your accident, take photos if possible. Try to capture any hazards, as well as the area that surrounds them. If there is water on the floor, make sure it is visible in any shots you take.
You can also use photos to document your injury. Take pictures of any redness or other signs of injury that occur immediately after your accident and keep photos of how bruises and other injuries progress over time. You can also keep photos of bandages, casts, and other treatments.
Write Everything Down
In addition to photos, many people like to keep an accident and injury journal. Write about what happened, what you ate or drank before your accident, how you are feeling, and how your injuries are affecting you. Keep track of how your injury heals or fails to heal. You should even make an entry every time you talk to an insurance company.
Consider getting a notebook with folders, so you can keep all documents connected to your accident in the same place. You can also start a digital “case file.”
The important things to remember here are:
- Document every detail
- Save all information connected to your case in one place (i.e. medical bills, records of accident-related expenses, correspondence from insurers, and anything that has to do with missed work).
Keep Your Clothes
Photos and documents are great pieces of evidence in slip and fall cases, but few things are more powerful than the clothing you wore on the day of your accident. Any visible rips, blood, or dirt can help show the severity of your accident. Do not throw away these clothes, wash them, or clean them in any way.
Don’t Play the Blame Game
Determining fault in slip & fall accidents requires careful investigation. Don’t admit to being “clumsy,” or accept blame in any way, nor speculate about how a store or restaurant owner caused your accident.
Speak in terms of fact whenever possible, and don’t speak to insurance adjusters until you speak to an attorney.
If you need to get started with a team of reliable lawyers, Sette & Parnoff, PC offers free consultations.
Call us at (203) 285-3075 or contact us online for the dependable, dedicated advocacy you deserve. No recovery. No fee.