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Slip-and-fall victims may be entitled to compensation

Slip-and-fall accidents occur all of the time in New York City, and with winter around the corner, they will only get more prevalent. Slips, trips and falls may seem like minor accidents at the time, but they can leave the victim with serious injuries such as broken bones, lacerations, back injuries or even brain injuries.

According to the Bureau of State Risk Management, slip-and-fall accidents are the second most common type of accident in the United States, just behind car accidents. They are also included as one of the top five causes of workers' compensation claims, the Bureau reported.

Oftentimes, slips, trips and falls are the result of negligent property maintenance. Snow, ice, wet spots, grease, polished floors, loose flooring or carpeting, uneven walking surfaces and clutter are all common causes behind slip-and-falls, and they can all be prevented.

Additionally, loose gravel and uneven sidewalks also contribute to many slips, trips and falls. Unkempt stairwells, curbs, lawns and parking lots also create trip-and-fall hazards all over New York City. When negligent maintenance is to blame for a slip-and-fall accident, the property owner could face legal liability.

Depending on the facts surrounding the incident, the person who was injured could potentially seek compensation from the property owner on a premises liability basis. That's because property owners have a legal duty to maintain safe premises that are free of hazards.

Recovery is especially possible if the property owner failed to abide by city building codes or regulations. An investigation by an experienced personal injury law firm can help determine if that was the case.

Source: University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Safety & Health, "Accident Prevention: Slips, Trips and Falls," last accessed Sept. 26, 2013

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