Just because you have grounds for a premises liability claim doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed a payout. If you slipped and fell on someone else’s property, you’ll have to prove how the owner or operator was negligent before you can pursue compensation for the associated damages. And in order to actually secure a payout, you’ll have to avoid making critical mistakes from day one.
Since even the strongest cases can be jeopardized by a few minor missteps, it’s wise to familiarize yourself with the kinds of mistakes that claimants often make over the course of the proceedings. Read on to review some of the most common errors that could threaten your case:
1. Failing to Preserve Critical Evidence
If you managed to gather any evidence at the scene—photographs of the hazard that caused the accident, for example, or the facility’s incident report—make copies to ensure redundancy, and give the originals to your legal team as soon as possible for safekeeping. Other evidence worth preserving includes surveillance footage of the accident and statements from eyewitnesses. Thankfully, you can turn to your personal injury attorney for help obtaining both.
2. Giving a Recorded Statement
The property owner’s insurance carrier may request a recorded statement fairly soon after the accident. In virtually all scenarios, it’s best to avoid giving one.
Speaking on the cause of action or the injuries you sustained before conducting an investigation or reaching maximum medical improvement, respectively, could hurt your credibility if you say something that turns out to be inaccurate. Should the claims adjuster be insistent, refer them to your legal team.
3. Postponing Medical Care
Slip and fall accidents tend to cause injuries that don’t manifest any immediate symptoms. As such, you should undergo a comprehensive medical evaluation as soon as possible, even if you’re not experiencing any major discomfort. Failing to seek prompt care could lead to serious complications, which you may be deemed liable for, thereby prohibiting you from pursuing the maximum payout possible.
4. Posting About the Incident Online
It’s only natural to turn to your friends and followers on social media after a traumatic experience like slipping and falling in public. Since the claims adjuster will most likely be monitoring your online activity, though, it’s best to stay off social media altogether.
If you cannot disable your accounts temporarily for personal or professional reasons, at least make sure to update your privacy settings so only those whom you approve can see your posts. Additionally, avoiding publishing anything about your recovery, your social life, or your expenditures as long as your case is pending.
Speak with a Premises Liability Attorney in St. Petersburg, Florida
At Emerson Straw PL, we know just how devastating unanticipated injuries can be for the whole family. If you or someone you love was seriously hurt because another party failed to exercise reasonable care, we’ll help you seek the funds needed to make your lives whole again.
Our compassionate team has more than 70 years of collective experience in the legal field. Call (727) 821-1500 or fill out our Contact Form to schedule a free consultation with a premises liability lawyer in St. Petersburg.