New Jersey Premises Liability Attorneys
When someone is injured from a slip, trip, or fall because of a dangerous or hazardous condition on someone else’s property, victims are generally entitled to file a claim for damages. Our lawyers at Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C., have been helping people since 1981. We build strong cases so that they can obtain compensation for their medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering.
If you are injured because of dangerous property conditions, contact our experienced premises liability attorneys to learn about your options. Call our New Jersey or New York offices to schedule a free initial consultation.
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Often referred to as “slip and falls,” the cause of premises accidents due to negligence or misconduct by property owners may depend on a variety of issues. Slip and falls can result in such serious injuries as back injuries, head injuries and compound fractures due to a variety of property conditions:
- Accumulations of snow and ice
- Defective and Dangerous stairways, railings and ramps
- Potholes in parking lots or sidewalk deviations
- Liquid or other foreign substances on floors
- Poor or insufficient lighting
- Falling debris or unsafe scaffolding
- Unsecured store merchandise
Many times people fall due to a combination of several factors. Fresh snow may conceal potholes. Ice may serve as a lubricant for uneven steps. Improperly installed handrails or lack of sufficient lighting can easily cause or contribute to a fall down accident. Negligent security can cause a fall while when escaping an assault.
Building Code Violations Causing Accidents
Some causes of falls are due to building code violations and violations of the BOCA Code. New Jersey has special laws for hotels and multiple dwelling unit apartments. These codes not only set standards for the construction of buildings, they also set standards for the safe maintenance of the property. At Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C., we consult with experts who determine whether there was a violation of the various New Jersey standards of maintenance. We employ engineers to conduct an on site inspection of the property where the injury occurred. Their investigation usually involves an interview with the client, a field inspection including measurements and forensic testing, as well as taking or examining accident scene photographs.
What should you do when injured in a slip-and-fall accident?
Dangerous premises accidents differ from other personal injury cases because the negligent and unsafe conditions can be quickly removed or remedied. Furthermore, many victims do not know the full extent of injury until they arrive home and realize they have more than a temporary sprain or strain, especially with child injuries. Loss of physical evidence makes property liability more difficult to prove. If you are injured due to dangerous property conditions, it is important to remember these guidelines:
- Confirm Facts – Be clear in describing the accident. After a fall you may visit a hospital and describe events to doctors, nurses and technicians. Unfortunately, they may skew your version of what happened. For example, one may write “fell on stairs while going up,” another may say “tripped on stairs,” and yet another may report “twisted ankle on stairs.” Discrepancies may be used to show inconsistency on your part even if you never used those exact words.
- Preserve Evidence – If you have been seriously injured in a slip and fall incident, it is critical to gather and preserve valuable evidence. Try to preserve the shoes you were wearing at the time you fell. Put them in a plastic bag and tape it shut so that any materials stuck on will remain. Also record the condition of the area at the time.
- Take Photographs – As soon as possible under the circumstances, have someone take pictures of the area where you fell, including floor surfaces. Photographs may show the presence or absence of mats, rugs, or slip-prevention materials like sand at the location. Also get pictures of signs in the area. If you have external injuries such as bruises, cuts, or scrapes, take photos to preserve the state of injuries at the time. If your injuries are severe, your attorney should help take photos and gather evidence.
- Record Witness Statements – Be sure you or someone with you gets the name, address, and telephone number of any potential witness. Return to the accident scene and visit nearby homes or businesses to see if there were witnesses to the accident or dangerous conditions. If you do get information, do not contact or speak to witnesses again. Let your attorney contact them for written statements.
Many times it is difficult to determine who was responsible for the care and maintenance or safety at the accident site. However, once a responsible party is identified, they should be notified about your incident. If possible, report it to a property owner as soon as possible, preferably under the advice of a lawyer. Also try to obtain a copy of the accident report.
At Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C., our lawyers have helped numerous people seriously hurt due of defective or dangerous property conditions obtain money damages and other compensation for their medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you have been injured in a premises liability accident, contact a lawyer who knows how to build a strong case for you. We are proud to represent people in Teaneck, Newark, Elizabeth, Paterson, Trenton, and the entire New York metro region.
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