How Is Liability Proven in a Slip and Fall Case?

Got Hurt?Get Gibbons!
Free Case Evaluation
100% Secure and Confidential
5 Star Rating (235+) 5.0 Google Rated
More than $100 Million recovered!

The first phase of your slip and fall case is the most crucial period. You can’t begin to negotiate for a single dollar until you show that someone else was to blame for the accident.

However, you are dealing with an insurance company that has every financial motivation in the world to be as skeptical as possible. You have the burden of proof to show liability for a slip and fall, and it is not always an easy hurdle to overcome.

At Gibbons & Crichton, Personal Injury and Accident Lawyers, our Philadelphia slip and fall attorneys are standing by and ready to fight for you today. Contact us to request we investigate your case and gather evidence of liability.

How Do You Prove a Slip and Fall Case?

As the claimant, you are the one who has the burden of proof in a slip and fall case. It is not always easy to meet this burden.

If the insurance company has any doubt that you have the necessary evidence to prove your claim, they will not hesitate to deny your claim. Your attorney must perform a full investigation before you submit the claim.

Your attorney can begin looking into your claim as soon as you hire them. You must get legal help as soon as possible after your accident because slip and fall evidence has a very limited shelf life. You can begin to lose evidence days after an accident, and it can never be recovered.

Examples of Hazardous Conditions That Can Cause Falls

Your lawyer would start with identifying the hazardous condition that caused your injury.

Numerous hazards can cause slip and fall accidents, including:

  • Debris left on walking paths
  • Spills in store aisles
  • Loose strings in the carpet
  • Missing handrails
  • Broken flooring
  • Water tracked inside
  • Ice in a parking lot or on a sidewalk

How to Prove Who is Liable in a Slip and Fall Accident

Merely identifying what caused your fall is nowhere near enough to qualify you for financial compensation. You would need to prove that someone else was negligent before you can receive a settlement offer or jury award.

In a slip and fall case, negligence can take on one of two forms:

  • The property owners themselves may have been the cause of the dangerous condition. If that is the case, they would be liable to pay you compensation.
  • Someone else may have created a dangerous condition, and the property owner failed to fix it within a reasonable time after they knew or should have known about it.

If liability is based on the latter, you would need to prove what the property owner knew and when they knew it. If the property owner is claiming that they did not know of the dangerous condition, you would need the evidence to show that there was more than enough time for them to discover it had they conducted a reasonable inspection of their premises.

You may not always have this evidence in your possession at the outset of the case. You may need to file a lawsuit in court to request proof that is in the defendant’s possession. You may learn about their negligence through the recordings or records that they had kept.

Evidence That Can Prove Liability in a Slip and Fall Case

In a slip and fall case, some of the evidence that you need may be in the hands of the responsible party. They are certainly not going to willingly give you this evidence because it can help you prove your case.

You must move to obtain this evidence as soon as possible because the defendant may be under no obligation to keep it. Your attorney could direct the defendant to preserve this evidence through the use of the litigation holder. Then, the defendant could face serious consequences if they lost or destroyed this information.

A slip and fall lawyer will aggressively pursue the evidence that you need to prove your case.

Immediately, your lawyer may begin talking to witnesses and reviewing any pictures of the scene of your accident. During a lawsuit, you may seek out:

  • Security camera footage that shows either your fall or what the conditions were in the area immediately before your accident
  • Inspection logs that show when the property owner viewed various areas under their control
  • Maintenance records that can show whether the property owner did something to remedy a dangerous condition and what they did

Remember that a property owner cannot just put their head in the sand. At a certain point, they are deemed to have known of a dangerous condition, even if they did not have actual knowledge. Your task is to show what they knew, or did not know, and when they eventually knew about the hazard.

Usually, you would file a lawsuit against the property owner. However, the property owner may not always have control of the property. In some cases, a lessee may be the one who had the chance to prevent your slip and fall injury. There are times when there could be more than one potential defendant in your slip and fall lawsuit.

It usually helps to have at least one defendant that is a corporate entity. The reason is that businesses will likely have more insurance to cover and pay for your damages. If your injuries are so severe, or the insurance coverage is so little, you may even be able to go after the business’ assets to pay for your damages.

At the same time, insurance companies and businesses will fight even harder when there is more money on the line. You need a lawyer who is skilled in slip and fall cases, and our attorneys most certainly are.

Contact a Philadelphia Slip and Fall Accident Attorney Today

You should anticipate that there will be legal difficulties with a slip and fall claim. Proving liability is an undertaking. There could be a legal battle ahead that stretches for months or even years.

However, that should not keep you from hiring an attorney to pursue full compensation for your injuries.

At Gibbons & Crichton, Personal Injury and Accident Lawyers, we know how to deal with the insurance companies that are trying to get in your way. We listen closely to your side, and we know how to put pressure on insurers to do the right thing.

You can schedule a free initial consultation with one of our attorneys by sending us a message through our website or by calling us today at 215-274-0173.

Awards & Recognitions

We're committed to providing award-winning representation to every single one of our clients.
Attorneys Top One Percent Gibbons Legal
Best Attorneys of America Gibbons Legal
Million Dollar Advocates Forum Gibbons Legal
Distinguished Advocacy Councel Top 1% Gibbons Legal
The National Trial Lawyers Top 40 Under 40 Gibbons Legal
American Academy of Trail Attorneys Premier 100 Gibbons Legal
America's Top 100 Attorneys Gibbons Legal
The National Trail Lawyers Top 100 Gibbons Legal
NAOPIA Gibbons Legal
10 Best AIoPIA Gibbons Legal
Rising Star Super Lawyer Gibbons Legal
Gibbons Legal Personal Injury Lawyer Awards and Associations
Available 24/7

Get Help Now

Free Case Evaluation

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.