Slip-and-fall accidents injure millions of people in South Carolina and across the country every year. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that there were more than 10 million emergency room visits for fall-related injuries in just one year.
These injuries often leave victims in severe pain that can last for weeks or months afterward. Some fall victims face lifelong disabilities. And if someone sustains a sharp blow to the head in a slip-and-fall accident, it can prove fatal.
The North Myrtle Beach slip-and-fall lawyers at the Jebaily Law Firm can help you seek compensation for your injuries if you’ve been hurt in an accident caused by someone’s negligence. We have more than 100 years of combined legal experience and have helped our clients recover millions of dollars.
Get a free initial consultation by calling our office in North Myrtle Beach, or feel free to visit our contact page.
Common Causes of Slip-and-Fall Accidents
One reason slip-and-fall accidents are so common is that they can happen almost anywhere under the right circumstances. If there’s a slick surface in a place where people walk, there’s a decent chance someone will slip and get hurt.
Some of the most common causes of slip-and-fall accidents include:
- Spilled liquids on the floor of a home, business, or workplace
- Rain, snow, ice, and other precipitation in hallways, sidewalks, parking lots, and other common areas
- People slipping or tripping on objects left on the floor
- People slipping while walking on poorly maintained sidewalks or other pathways
- People tripping over power cords
- People slipping on staircases or steep walkways due to damaged handrails
- People slipping on the floor because of poor lighting
- Residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities slipping on the floor due to poor upkeep
- Construction site accidents
- Swimming pool accidents
Common Places Where Slip-and-Fall Accidents Occur
Property owners and businesses have a legal responsibility to provide tenants, visitors, and employees safe premises to live, work, and conduct business. This includes specific duties to protect visitors from slip-and-fall injuries, whether they’re a North Myrtle Beach resident or a tourist visiting the area. If you’re visiting a business in North Myrtle Beach and you slip on a dangerous walkway, you may have a claim for compensation, no matter whether or not you live in South Carolina.
Here are some of the most common locations of slip-and-fall accidents:
- Hotels and resorts
- Stores and restaurants
- Sports stadiums
- Movie theaters
- Amusement parks
- Public playgrounds and parks
- Parking lots and garages
- Apartment complexes, condos, townhomes, and other rental properties
- Construction sites
- Swimming pools
- Elevators and escalators
- Assisted living facilities and nursing homes
What Do You Have to Prove in a Slip-and-Fall Claim?
First, you have to prove that you were on the property legally – though trespassing children may have a claim in some cases. Assuming that’s the case, you will have to show that the property owner owed you a duty of care and somehow failed in that duty.
Business owners generally have a higher duty of care to customers than homeowners do to guests. Business owners are expected to keep an active eye out for potential hazards and fix them quickly, or at least make sure customers are adequately warned.
Homeowners are generally only required to warn guests of potential hazards that the homeowner is reasonably expected to have known about. If your case meets this standard for negligence, you likely have a case for compensation.
How Can a North Myrtle Beach Slip-and-Fall Attorney Help?
Property owners and their insurers often push back against any claim you make after a slip-and-fall accident. Let a slip-and-fall accident lawyer uphold your rights and handle the legal details for you, so you can focus on healing.
An experienced attorney can help by:
- Identifying who’s liable for your injury and how much you can claim in compensation
- Gathering and preserving evidence to support your case
- Handling all your communication needs, including settlement negotiations
- Taking your case to trial if a reasonable settlement can’t be reached
Demanding Compensation for Your Slip-and-Fall Accident Injuries
South Carolina allows slip-and-fall accident victims to recover fair compensation if they can prove negligence on the part of the property owner. You can potentially claim compensation for:
- Your lost wages
- Your reduced ability to work because of your injuries
- Your medical expenses related to your injuries, including the cost of future care
- Your pain and suffering
- Your mental anguish and diminished quality of life
- Other related losses
How Long Do You Have to File a Premises Liability Claim in North Myrtle Beach?
South Carolina’s statute of limitations on premises liability claims gives you three years from the date of your injury to file a lawsuit. This is a strict deadline. Only rare and narrow circumstances can extend it.
Crucial evidence can disappear quickly after an accident, so you’re better off getting in touch with a lawyer as soon as possible if you want to pursue full compensation for your injuries.
What to Do If You’ve Been Hurt in a Fall
There are simple but essential steps you can take to protect your rights after a slip-and-fall accident, such as:
- Report the accident. If it happened on some sort of commercial property, file a written report with the manager or property owner and make sure you get a copy. If it happened on public property – a sidewalk, for example – report it to the government agency responsible for it.
- As soon as possible, write down all the details of the accident you can remember. Make sure to get the names of anyone who was with you when the accident occurred. If there were any third-party witnesses, get their contact information before leaving the scene. You might also want to take pictures of the accident scene.
- Get medical treatment immediately. Once you’ve seen a doctor, follow all of their instructions precisely.
- Save all the evidence. This includes pictures you took, your medical records, names of third-party witnesses, etc. If relevant, save the shoes and clothes you wore at the time, and don’t wash them. The more evidence you have, the stronger your case for compensation.
- Talk to a lawyer. A lawyer can take care of the legal legwork involved in your case while you focus on getting better.