Proving Negligence in Slip and Fall Cases
Although property owners have a legal duty to ensure that their property is safe for guests and visitors, the fact that you were injured on someone else’s property does not make the property owner automatically liable for your injuries. In order to pursue a claim, you need to be able to prove that the property owner was negligent in some way. This can be far more difficult than many people realize, but working with a Raleigh personal injury lawyer can help you prove your claim.
Knew or Should Have Known
To pursue a claim for compensation, you will have to prove that the owner knew of the hazard that caused the accident and your injury. While this sounds straightforward, it can be more difficult to prove than you might think. On a large property, hazards can go unnoticed even by owners who are diligent in maintaining the property. You may have been told that the owner had been previously warned of the hazard, but how do you prove that? A Raleigh personal injury attorney can use the legal process to collect the evidence you need.
People often assume that the property owner will simply say that they had no idea that the hazard existed. Fortunately for those who are injured, this is not sufficient for avoiding liability by itself. If you can prove that they should have known – i.e., the hazard would have been easily identifiable to a responsible property owner – then the property owner may be held liable for your injuries.
What Exactly Does the Owner’s Duty of Care Require Them to Do?
The property owner’s legal obligation to keep the property safe is sometimes referred to as the duty of care. This duty of care arguably requires the property owner to do the following:
- Routinely inspect the property to identify potential hazards to guests and visitors
- Maintain the property in good repair
- Make a reasonable effort to correct known hazards
- Make a reasonable effort to warn guests and visitors of known hazards if they cannot be reasonably corrected
An experienced Raleigh personal injury attorney will know what evidence you need to prove that the property owner breached their duty of care to you.
Watch Out for Contributory Negligence Claims
North Carolina is one of a very small number of states that still follows the “pure” contributory negligence rule. Under that rule, you can be barred from receiving any compensation if your own negligence contributed to the accident in any way. As a result, property owners will routinely attempt to blame the injured person for the accident. For example, a bar owner may try to argue that your own intoxication caused you to slip and fall, and they should therefore not be held liable even though you tripped over the broken flooring that they neglected to repair. If the property owner is trying to blame you for your accident, you should speak with a Raleigh personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Injured on Someone Else’s Property? Call a Raleigh Personal Injury Attorney Today
At Martin & Jones, we’ve been helping people get fair compensation for their injuries for 40 years. If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, contact us today at 800-662-1234 to schedule a free consultation to discuss how we can help.Share This
The law firm you choose makes a difference. If you are the victim of an accident or an illness that someone else caused, the North Carolina personal injury law firm of Martin & Jones has the depth of experience, skills and sensitivity to make your road to recovery as smooth as possible. Whether you have experience with the legal system or have never hired a medical malpractice or personal injury lawyer before, our attorneys and staff will do our best to answer your questions, provide clear advice and prepare you and your family for what to expect. If you would like more information or to meet with one of our attorneys, please fill out the form below or call us at 800.662.1234.