My law firm Goldfinger Injury Lawyers has successfully handled countless slip and fall cases. We have recovered our clients millions of dollars getting them the compensation which they deserve after they’ve been seriously injured as a result of a slip and fall caused by the negligence of a property owner. Please note that past results are not indicative of future results.
People are curious as to where these slip and fall case take place. I’m sure we’ve all seen someone wipe out or fall to the ground. But does this mean that the person will have a successful case? Does this mean that someone will reach out to a personal injury lawyer in order to claim compensation for their injuries, damages, or losses?
This is Brian Goldfinger’s comprehensive list of the top 5 most common places our lawyers see slip and fall cases take place. We are releasing our top 5 list now in the winter time, because this is the time of year where we see the most slip and fall cases happen.
#5 The Grocery Store
You would be amazed at the number of slip and falls which happen at the grocery store! People slip and fall on discarded food items. People slip and fall on produce which has fallen to the ground from a produce stand. People slip and fall on water from a leaky cooler. People slip and fall on slush, snow and ice dragged in by other customers. People trip and fall on grocery carts. People slip and fall on wet floors which have just been cleaned. People trip and fall on food displays or shelving which abuts the grocery aisle. Some cases are successful. Others are not. Private property owners such as grocers are not held to a standard of perfection. It’s up to the personal injury lawyer to establish negligence. The personal injury lawyer has to show that the grocer failed to adhere to a proper standard of care; failed to have any system of inspection in place; or failed to do their job in keeping the store free and clear of hazards which they knew, or ought to have known about. Beware the grocery store! They can be dangerous if you’re not paying proper attention to your surroundings.
#4 City Sidewalks
City/Municipal sidewalks can get all sorts of slippery, snowy and icy during the winter. Some city sidewalks are maintained rather well. Others are not. Suing a City/Municipality is difficult. The standard of care for these cases is elevated from negligence; to gross negligence. Needless to say, suing a private property owner is much easier than suing a City/Municipality. There are also onerous limitation notice provisions for suing a City/Municipality for a slip and fall case. The Plaintiff must given written notice to the Clerk within 10 days of his/her accident. While failing to meet this 10 day notice requirement is not a complete bar to a claim; it allows the Defendant a free kick at the can to ask the Judge to have the case dismissed. The Judge may side with the Defendant and dismiss the Plaintiff’s case.
#3 Parking Lots
Above ground and underground parking lots can get icy, slippery and rather slick to walk on. Many private property owners completely ignore inspecting them, and ignore maintaining them in the winter. They don’t sand, salt or clear them. Other private property owners contact the winter maintenance of their parking lots to independent third party contractors. The contractors might be there one day, but not on others. They can be unreliable or do shotty work. The result is hazardous parking lots which are closer to skating rinks than areas to park a car and walk. In these case, the Plaintiff will need to sue the owner of the parking lot, along with the winter maintenance contractor. In addition, the Plaintiff may also need to sue the property manager, if there is one. What often happens in these cases is that the Defendants seek to pass the blame to one another. They all acknowledge that the fall happened, and that the Plaintiff was injured, but they won’t accept any responsibility for the accident. Instead, they will seek to “pass the buck” over to another co-Defendant. What starts as a simple slip and fall case quickly evolves into multi party complex litigation.
Walkways are just like sidewalks, only privately owned. We often see these walkways in condo complexes, town house complexes or co-operative housing complexes. These are common areas for tenants, visitors and invitees. These common areas are the property of the condo or co-op; and as such, it’s the responsibility of the condo or co-op to clean and maintain these areas. Sometimes they are properly cleared, sanded and salted. Other times, they are completely neglected leading to dangerous hazards. There ought to be a regular system of inspection in place to make sure that those common areas are safe for residents and visitors. The system of inspection should also make sure that the winter maintenance, sanding and salting is done properly. It’s very hard to be a tenant of one of these properties where the common areas are not properly maintained. It’s like you have to skate every time you step foot outside of your own unit.
#1 Your House or Your Own Property!
Slip and falls can happen anywhere. Even at your own house! Trouble is, you can’t sue yourself for your own negligence. But, that’s not to say that someone else who attended at your property cannot sue you instead. Your mailperson cannot sue you for slipping and falling on your exterior front steps while delivering the mail. The only reason they can’t sue you is because it’s a workplace accident and they will be forced to go through WSIB. But your friend who you invited to your home, or that third party delivery person can. The good news is that if you have home owner’s insurance, you will be covered for your legal costs and any award on the claim. The bad news is that someone gets hurt on your property and you feel bad. And then you have to live with litigation looming over your head because you failed to clear your property and someone got seriously injured while trying to visit.