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What you need to consider before hiring a slip and fall attorney

by Staff writer
05 May 2021 at 15:22hrs | Views
Getting serious injuries due to someone else's negligence is always stressful. This is because you need to be hospitalized and it can drain you financially because of the inability to continue working. If you suffer an injury due to a slip and fall in a private or public place, the law can allow you to file a claim against the at-fault party. However, to get a fair settlement for your claim, it's a good idea to hire Slip and Fall - New York City attorney.

Remember that sustaining severe injuries in a slip and fall accident is something to be taken seriously. Workers' compensation and medical bills can sometimes be hard to address yourself, this is why you need an experienced attorney to work on your behalf. In some cases, the compensation for the victims of slip and fall can be poor. But with an attorney on your side, it means that they can defend your rights so that your desires and needs are met. This article discusses what you need to consider before hiring a slip and fall attorney.

Factors to consider before hiring a slip and fall attorney
A good slip and fall attorney can gather and present all the required evidence to show the income you may lose due to missed time from your work. Also, your attorney can allocate more time to organizing the right records and medical bills important to the case so that you get the compensation you deserve.

No doubt, you need to present good evidence as proof that the injuries you suffered was because someone was negligent. Regardless of the type of evidence you have, it's essential that this evidence should give you good credibility about your claim. This is why you need to hire an experienced attorney to represent you. A reputable slip and fall attorney needs to have the following:

An estimate of the compensation 

Slip and fall attorneys have various levels of experience because this relates to personal injury. So you need to find a Personal Injury Law Firm with many years of experience handling slip and fall accidents so that you are properly represented in the court of law. There are several things you need to consider before you decide to hire a slip and fall attorney. Perhaps, one of the most important one is the legal fee.

You need to have a rough estimate of how much you can get in monetary compensation if you win the case. This depends on the severity of the case, but an experienced attorney can offer you this estimate. Remember that like many other estimates, this is not a guarantee that you will receive the exact amount that is in the estimate. These things tend to be unpredictable, so you need to have realistic expectations.

Your lawyer can provide an estimate, but it's not something to fully rely on it. So when discussing with the attorneys about your situation, you must compare and contrast their opinions, and choose an attorney based on their responses.

Specific attorney to handle your case
The next thing worth consideration is to identify the exact attorney who will handle the case on your behalf. There are many lawyers out there who don't handle the cases themselves. You can find some slip and fall attorneys who usually delegate most of the responsibilities to their secretary or paralegal. As a result, they may not spend enough time looking at various aspects of the legal system.

A paralegal may handle some of the issues like assisting you the paperwork and even getting the right documentation so that the case can move forward. This may seem odd to see a prospective lawyer handling the legal process in this way. However, rest assured that they do all these for your benefit and it makes the legal process run smoothly.

Legal fees
It's also necessary to find out how the legal fees will be handled before you decide to hire a slip and fall attorney. Most of the slip and fall attorneys can charge you a fee based on a certain percentage of the amount of money you get in the recovery process. Lawyers usually get a cut from the money that you are rewarded if you win the case.

However, this can vary with each attorney, though you may expect them to get a certain percentage of the total reward. Other lawyers prefer to charge you a fixed hourly rate to compensate for their effort and time, but you can also negotiate this and can be changed as you get closer to the trial date.

Courtroom experience
Courtroom experience is another huge factor that needs consideration when hiring a slip and fall attorney. Ideally, an attorney needs to have confidence in the courtroom and should do enough work to represent you.

Not all slip and fall cases make their way to trial, but you still need to find an attorney who has courtroom experience to have better chances of success. This needs to have the right balancing act. You see, it can be a huge risk to hire an attorney with little experience in the courtroom proceedings. Therefore, you need to get someone who is seasoned, confident, and has a good track record of success in the majority of slip and fall cases.

Sometimes, it's a good idea to get newcomers in law practice the benefit of the doubt. But you need to be careful when it comes to issues that can affect your life and well-being. A slip and fall case is one of the things that you can't leave for an inexperienced attorney to handle.

Keep in mind that injuries that you sustain in the slip and fall accident can be shocking, disorienting, and painful. In such moments after the accident, you can be numb, confused, and even embarrassed. As a result, many people can think that they don't have to seek legal action or an attorney.

But if you get injuries in a slip and fall accident, you must consult an experienced attorney. An attorney can help you prove liability and provide proof of your injuries so that you are compensated adequately for your injuries.

How an attorney can help you
Unlike a car accident, when there are usually two parties involved in an accident, a slip and fall accident normally involves a single party. Therefore, it can be quite hard to prove the one who was at fault. For example, when a rear end of another car hits your car that is in front, there is clear evidence that their rear car was at fault, regardless of the surrounding situation. However, when you fall down a staircase or even slip on a landing, it's important to find the one who was at fault in the surrounding circumstances.

The truth is that in a slip and fall accident, there is not another party that is pushing to fall. Instead, there are only circumstances of the scene and the dangerous condition that may contribute to the fall. Therefore, depending on where you fell, it can become the responsibility of the property owner or business to keep the place safe. Proving that the property owner or business is responsible for your accident can be a huge undertaking when you decide to do it yourself.

You can be going up against the business and their insurance company. It's rare that the insurers of the property or business responsible in your slip and fall will accept liability if you are not represented. To them, this can be a sign that either you have a weak case or you are not taking the case seriously.

A slip and fall lawyer can open enough channels of communication with the at-fault party's insurance company. Even better, the attorney can also use their experience and expertise to assist to prove liability so that you can get compensation. That said, here are some of the things a slip and fall attorney can do for you:

They can prove liability
For a slip and fall case to get to a stage where it can either go to trial or be settled, you need first prove liability. Liability means that the property owner or business was negligent. For the defendant to be liable for the slip and fall accident, the property owner or the business needs to have played a role in causing your injury.

The law says that the premises or business owner has a duty of care to have safe conditions on their property. Therefore, the owner must warn people of all hidden and known dangers that the entrant may not know, and which the entrant can not reasonably discover by themselves.

Essentially, all the dangers that the premises owner knows or should know of needs to be repaired, or warn the guests on entry of these dangers. This means repairing problems as they arise like filling in any holes or correcting uneven surfaces, and putting the right signage in potential hazardous areas in the interim prior to correcting the issue. A premises or business owner needs to alert the public of any problems on the property and correct the issue timely.

When the owner fails to take the right steps, it means they have failed to uphold their responsibility of offering a safe environment to the public. If a premise's owner fails to meet this standard of care and you get injured as a result, then the owner is considered to be negligent, so they can be liable for the injuries you suffer.

They can prove damages
A good slip and fall attorney can help you collect all relevant information related to the case so that you may prove the defendant was negligent and negotiate a fair settlement. After establishing liability, an attorney needs to gather all the evidence, such as witness statements, medical records, and photographs from the accident scene.

Medical records and documentation of lost income can be important when it comes to proving the damages you experience in a slip and fall accident. From your initial visit throughout any needed medical treatment, it's crucial to get all relevant medical attention you receive from injuries in writing.

The role of a lawyer is to gather all these documents, such as employer's pay records, medical bills and records, and tax forms and returns. After collecting all the necessary documents, a lawyer can carefully review your pain and suffering so that they present to the insurer the most accurate estimation.

Signage
A warning sign can be effective if it warns you while entering the property of any hidden dangers. Therefore, a sign that is put in a wrong location, is too small to see, or is simply unreadable may not meet the required standard because it cannot be visible enough to put you on notice of any dangers.  

In this situation, the premises or business owner may likely be liable for any injuries you suffer while on the property, even though there was the presence of this warning sign.

Above all, your attorney can get to the bottom of the slip and fall accident by asking various questions about what you remember about the accident. They can also ask you the looks of the accident scene and the availability of potential witnesses.

There are several possibilities as to why you may have fallen. These include missing a step and tripping over a dress, coat, shoelace, or many other pieces of clothing.

A slip and fall injury attorney can check the accident scene and assist to determine what exactly caused the fall. With an extensive knowledge in slip and fall accidents, your attorney can determine if all these possibilities are due to the negligence of the defendant.

For example, a business owner cannot be legally responsible if you tripped over your dress and fell down the stairs. But if you lost balance and fell because the risers are of varying heights, then it's the responsibility of the premises owner for failure to correct the badly constructed staircase that led to the accident.

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