What to do After a Slip and Fall Accident in a Store
The last thing any person expects when they go into a store is that they will slip and fall on a hazard caused by the careless or negligent actions of a property owner or employee. However, slip and fall injuries occur regularly inside stores in California. Here, our Sacramento personal injury attorneys want to discuss what you should do if you are a slip and fall victim inside of a store so that you can recover the compensation you are entitled to.
After a Fall in a Store, Take the Following Steps Quickly
Slip and fall accidents that occur inside of a store need to be handled quickly because the evidence will begin to disappear very soon after the incident occurs.
- Seek immediate medical care. The number one priority for any slip and fall injury victim is to seek medical care.
- Report the incident to employees. Any slip and fall injury that happens inside of a store needs to be reported to employees, preferably the on-duty manager or supervisor. Most stores have a procedure in place for reporting slip and fall injuries. If you do not report the slip and fall injury, this could lead to the insurance carrier or legal team for the premises saying that the incident really did not occur.
- Take photographs quickly. If you are not seriously injured or if somebody is with you, you need to get photographs of the scene very quickly before the evidence disappears. Take photographs of the cause of the slip and fall, which can include spills, leaks, cords, obstacles, etc. You should also take photographs of any injuries as well as the area where the incident occurred.
- Gather additional information. If there were any eyewitnesses to the incident, you need to get their names and contact information so they can be reached later on by insurance carriers or even for a personal injury trial if one becomes necessary.
- Document everything about the incident. It is always good for injury victims to write down everything that they remember about the incident. This needs to happen the day of the incident while everything is still fresh in the injury victim’s mind. Store slip and fall accident victims should also keep a journal after the incident and document how they’re feeling each day until they have reached maximum medical recovery. This type of documentation can help show specific types of damages that are harder to quantify, including pain and suffering and emotional distress.
- Preserve evidence. If there is any additional evidence related to the slip and fall incident, including shoes or clothing that were worn, do not throw them away or clean them. They may have substances or residue from whatever caused the slip and fall incident.
Working With a Lawyer
If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a slip and fall accident at a store in California, you need to work with an attorney as soon as possible. A slip and fall accident lawyer can get involved very quickly and help preserve any evidence needed to prove liability. They can also recover evidence that is harder for slip and fall victims to obtain on their own, including video surveillance from the store’s cameras. An attorney can also recover any records showing whether or not the store has a history of allowing slip and fall hazards to occur.