The Factors That Go Into a Slip And Fall Case
Whether you are at a neighbor's house or a store in your community, you may at some point suffer a slip and fall accident. When these accidents happen, victims often experience broken bones, head injuries, back injuries, and other medical issues that require extensive treatment. As a result, victims often choose to file personal injury lawsuits to gain compensation for their damages. However, just because you slipped and fell on another person's property does not automatically mean the other party was completely at fault for your injuries. In many cases, the legal concept of comparative negligence plays a role in determining how much compensation slip and fall accident victims will receive. If comparative negligence is a key element of your slip and fall case, speak to a personal injury attorney Los Angeles relies on for guidance in such cases from Gutierrez Law.
How to Win a Slip and Fall Case
When you suffer slip and fall injuries and choose to file a personal injury lawsuit, the task you and your Los Angeles slip and fall attorney will have is to prove the property owner was negligent in terms of how they maintained their property. In other words, you will need to prove the property owner failed to exercise reasonable care in making sure the property would be safe for others. But as an extra element, your slip and fall lawyer Los Angeles clients trust at Gutierrez Law will also need to demonstrate that the property owner knew or should have known about the dangerous conditions associated with the property, but chose not to take the steps necessary to correct the problem.
How Will Comparative Negligence Impact the Case?
As for comparative negligence, this refers to whether or not the plaintiff was negligent in a way that contributed to the accident. Should your case go to trial, this would mean the jury would be determining how much if any negligence may have contributed to your accident. If it is determined you did contribute to your accident, you can still win your case. However, the amount of compensation you receive would be lowered, depending on what percentage of negligence the jury felt was your responsibility. Therefore, to ensure slip and fall settlements for victims in these cases are always fair, make sure you hire Gutierrez Law. As a personal injury attorney Los Angeles residents know always fights for their clients, you can be sure the settlement you receive will be reasonable.
The Defendant's Strategy
In slip and fall cases where comparative negligence is at the forefront, the defendant's strategy will be to show you were indeed quite responsible for your accident, if not completely responsible. Since it is up to the defendant to raise the question of comparative negligence, you as the plaintiff will not be expected by the court to prove you were not negligent. Thus, unless the defendant can show you did something wrong or dangerous that resulted in you slipping and falling, it is likely you and your Los Angeles slip and fall attorney will emerge from court as winners.
Proving the Defendant's Negligence
While you may think you will have an easy path to victory in your slip and fall case, don't get overconfident. Remember, though you don't necessarily have to prove you were not negligent, you do need to show the defendant was negligent in creating a situation or allowing a situation to develop that led to you being injured. Should you fail to do so, your case will be over, meaning no compensation will be coming your way. Since you will need compensation to pay your medical bills and allow you to have income while you are out of work, hire a slip and fall lawyer Los Angeles that will use all available evidence to prove a defendant's negligence in these cases.
Pure Comparative Negligence
When a state relies on "pure" comparative negligence, this means the plaintiff's compensation will be reduced based on how much a jury believes they contributed to their accident. Thus, if you were awarded $100,000 by a jury but were found to be 40% responsible for your accident, your actual award would be $60,000.
Modified Comparative Negligence
While "pure" comparative negligence is only used by a few states, modified comparative negligence is much more common in these cases. When this method is used, it simply comes down to whether or not a jury feels a plaintiff or defendant were more at fault for the accident. Thus, if a jury feels you as the plaintiff were only 51% responsible for your accident, you would receive no compensation for your injuries. As for cases where negligence is split 50/50 between the plaintiff and defendant, the outcome can vary among states. While some states will consider a tie to be a win for the plaintiff, others will not. Because of this, you should always hire a personal injury attorney Los Angeles clients turn to due to a track record of success in winning comparative negligence cases.
As the plaintiff in a slip and fall case, you should be extremely grateful that very few states today decide these cases using the concept of contributory negligence. In these situations, a plaintiff would lose their case if a judge or jury felt the plaintiff did anything at all that could be construed as being negligent prior to their accident. Thus, the standard for plaintiffs in these situations was perfection, since being just one percent negligent was enough to lose a case.
Due to the many confusing elements involved in reaching slip and fall settlements, plan on being patient while your case plays out. Since this will likely involve negotiations with insurance companies to keep your case from going to trial, place your trust in Gutierrez Law when seeking maximum compensation for your injuries. By doing so, you will have a Los Angeles slip and fall attorney working on your case who will hold a property owner and insurance company accountable for their actions.