Things to Do Immediately When Injured on Someone Else’s Property
There are countless personal injury cases every year in which people who have been injured seek compensation to cover the costs of their medical bills or other damages. Often when we think of personal injuries, we immediately think of car crashes or workplace injuries, but some of the most serious occur on other people’s property. If an accident has occurred because of negligence or some danger on the property, the resulting legal case is called a premises liability lawsuit. There are various factors that dictate whether an incident rises to the level of premises liability and it is important to understand what these factors are, and what you should do if you sustain an injury in this way.
To help make this subject clearer, here are the things to do immediately when injured on someone else’s property.
1. Report the Incident
The first thing that you need to do when injured on someone else’s property is to report the incident in the accident book. Every commercial premise, whether it be a retail store or a restaurant must, by law, have an accident book, and this will act as contemporaneous evidence of what happened. Make sure you write down exactly what happened and why, and that the record is dated and signed both by you and a supervisor or owner of the premises. It is always worth taking a photo of this record on your phone to secure the evidence, as well as photos of anything which might show a judge exactly what happened. Do not be intimidated by anyone on the premises as it is your legal right to do this.
2. Hire a Lawyer
After you have taken care of your injuries, it is vital that you speak to an experienced personal injury attorney with knowledge of premises liability cases. There are many of these cases in Texas and elsewhere in the US, but one premises liability attorney Greeneville explains that these are often highly contentious legal disputes. A specialized attorney will be able to look at your case and make a well-informed decision about how best to proceed. They will take all the burden off your shoulders and leave you free to focus on recovering from your injuries.
3. Have Your Injuries Treated
Once you have reported the incident and got legal help, the next thing you must do is get treatment for your injuries. This is important for two main reasons. First of all, immediate medical attention and treatment will help you to make a more effective recovery as your doctors will be able to address your issues straight away. They can prescribe medicine for your pain and ensure that you undergo any surgery or other procedure at the earliest possible time. Secondly, you will need the medical reports which will be produced during this treatment to use as evidence in your case. It is vital that these reports are secured immediately because there are many states where you have only a limited period of time to obtain them before they are considered invalid evidence. If you don’t get treatment for your injuries until two weeks after the accident, the owner of the property will be able to say that you were hurt at a later time.
4. Identify if You Have a Valid Case
Every incident of personal injury is unique, and the circumstances in which you got hurt will ultimately decide if you have a valid case or not. When it comes to premises liability, the most important factor involved is proving that the property owner or someone in charge of the property acted with negligence which led to you getting hurt. If you can prove this, you will be eligible for financial damages to cover your medical bills and any pain, suffering or other damage caused. If you were hurt because there was a wet floor without a sign, for example, or a dangerously sharp edge on a table in a restaurant, you may be entitled to compensation. This determination will be made by your lawyer based on the facts of your case and their confidence in a positive outcome.
Premises liability cases can settle many types of personal injury disputes. The court will ultimately look at the unique circumstances of your incident and decide whether you are responsible for being inattentive or clumsy or whether the property was inherently dangerous due to a hazard or human incompetence. No two cases are the same so it is always important that you seek experienced legal advice to ascertain whether you are entitled to compensation. Most premises liability attorneys do not charge a fee unless they win so legal fees are not a concern you need to have.