Slip and fall accidents happen most often when a public or private property owner fails to maintain their premises so that it is free of unsafe or potentially hazardous conditions. Although a slip and fall accident can happen anywhere and at any time, they tend to occur more frequently on wet and unstable surfaces.
Common Reasons Why Slip and Fall Accidents Occur
Slip and fall accidents generally happen when an individual loses their footing. This can happen while visiting a friend at their apartment complex, at the grocery store, or even while walking down the sidewalk. While anything can interfere with a person’s ability to walk, jog, or run safely, a few hazardous conditions are known to contribute to slip and fall accidents, some of which are highlighted below.
Icy or Snowy Surfaces
New Hyde Park is no stranger to snow and ice, which is why Chapter 90, Local Law No. F §90-1 requires most property owners to maintain their sidewalks in a safe condition. According to the law, maintenance of the sidewalk includes clearing it of ice and snow within a reasonable time.
In some cases, it might be the property owner (e.g., landlord) who is liable for clearing the walkway, while in others, it may be the individual who is occupying the residence on the land.
If a public or private property owner fails to maintain their premises and keep it clear of ice and snow, and someone slips and falls on their property because of this, they may be held liable for compensating them for the injuries they suffered.
Wet or Slippery Floors
When you enter a grocery store or even your local shopping mall, you expect to be able to walk around without having to worry about whether your safety is at risk. Not only is the property owner or the person assigned to oversee operations required to keep the floors clear from debris and objects, but they must also be sure they aren’t wet or slippery.
Unfortunately, not all property owners take the precautions they should, which can lead to a slip and fall accident occurring on their premises.
If a person slips on a wet surface at the mall, in a supermarket, or anywhere else, they may be able to hold the property owner accountable for their negligent behavior. Some examples of negligent behavior might include:
- An employee mopped the floor just before the store opened and failed to ensure it was dry before allowing customers to enter.
- A store owner/operator neglected to place a slip-free mat in front of the door to prevent water buildup or left it curled up in front of the entryway.
- A product spilled down a shopping aisle and was not cleaned up.
- The floor was freshly waxed just before customers were permitted to enter with no warning signs present.
Another common cause of slip and fall accidents is construction defects. Some examples include:
- Walkway defects
- Unstable staircases
- Uneven stairs
- Poorly constructed stairways
- Poorly maintained sidewalks
- Lifted flooring
Properties in New York are required to be constructed according to certain coding regulations. When these regulations are not met, and a property owner’s premises contains a defective condition that could cause harm to someone who enters, they could be held liable for any injuries those unsafe conditions cause.
Damages You Can Pursue in Premises Liability Cases
In the event you slipped and fell on someone else’s property and suffered injuries, you may be entitled to recover compensation for various damages, including:
- Pain and suffering
- Lost income
- Past and future medical expenses
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Other costs you incurred as a result of the incident
Typically, when an individual wants to be compensated by a property owner, they would need to file a premises liability lawsuit against them. If you slipped and fell on public property, your lawsuit may be filed against a city or government entity as the government owns the public property.
In the event your accident occurred on private property, which is any property that is not owned by the government, then your lawsuit may need to be filed against a business owner or the landowner.
Obtain Legal Help After Slipping and Falling on Public or Private Property
If you were injured on public or private property and you would like to find out if you have a viable case against the property owner, contact the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe at (516) 358-6900. Our legal team can evaluate your case and determine if you have the grounds to sue. If you do and are entitled to compensation for your damages and losses, we will fight for the best possible outcome.
For a free legal consultation, call 516-358-6900