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Evidence in a Slip and Fall Case

By San Diego Attorney on July 16, 2020

We have all been told to take photos, get witness statements, and contact the police during a car accident, but what about a bad fall? Whether you slipped in the entrance to a restaurant or fell down a flight of stairs in an office building, you are likely in a lot of pain, confused, and unsure about what to do next. Most people do not assume they have a case and contribute the fall to clumsiness, but for those who do believe they have a case, how to collect evidence may be unclear.

After a Fall

The initial conditions of the area where you fell are vital to determining liability and negligence in your case. However, if you hit your head, broke a bone, or are unable to move, then collecting evidence will prove difficult. Your first step should be to call 911 to receive immediate medical attention, but this will also help you collect evidence. You can speak to the police after your fall, explain what happened from your perspective, and even ask them to take photos of the hazard that caused your accident. The report may also help determine liability and allow you to demonstrate that a property owner was negligent.

Your medical report will also be vital to your case. Slip and fall claims require a victim to prove that they suffered injuries and your medical report will outline just that. Based on the type of trauma you suffered, such as serious lacerations or a sprained ankle, they may also outline what caused the fall. However, insurance companies will often dispute your medical conditions and require follow-up appointments with their own third-party doctors who are more likely to side with them.

To ensure you have a strong case for compensation, you will require additional evidence of negligence, which will vary depending on the situation surrounding your fall.

Additional Slip and Fall Evidence

Photos, video, and witness statements are all invaluable in any type of accident, but they may prove difficult to collect. You might not be able to take photos or video of the hazard that caused your injury if you are seriously injured, unless you have someone with you who can collect that evidence. You may wish to ask the police to take photos for the accident report, but you will ultimately want someone you trust handling that material.

In addition, witness statements may be slightly biased. Employees at private businesses, such as office workers or janitorial staff, will be unenthusiastic about providing statements, even when asked by the police. They may not want to name a specific hazard, such as a lack of wet floor signs or an uneven carpet, if they caused it, or out of fear of being fired.

However, there are other forms of evidence that an attorney can collect in a slip and fall case, including:

  • Surveillance footage of the area where you fell, such as an entranceway or hallway
  • Maintenance reports of similar falls or reports about hazards that were not fixed properly
  • Testimony from tenants or guests who may have also had an accident or knew about the safety hazard
  • Building plans or expert opinions from engineers and architects
  • Citations from the city regarding building safety
  • Your clothing and shoes, and even photos of your clothing after an accident, can demonstrate that a floor was wet or slippery

Injured in San Diego? Call Us!

Collecting this evidence will require the skill and knowledge of an experienced slip and fall accident attorney who can investigate all aspects of your case. To ensure not a single detail is left out of your claim, contact the San Diego premises liability attorney at jD LAW, P.C. Our lead attorney is a former LAPD investigator who can utilize his expertise to analyze the scene of your accident and determine what factors contributed to your injuries. If the property owner or a worker was negligent, he can then pursue a claim on your behalf for compensation. Call our firm at (760) 630-2000 to learn what options are available to you.

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Posted in: Slip and Fall

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James N. Dicks
jD LAW, P.C.

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If you feel uncomfortable with an in-person meeting due to the recent surge in COVID-19, our office is offering remote appointments via phone and Zoom. Please call or email us to set up your appointment.

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