Slip and fall accidents are often more than a little embarrassing. If a property owner’s negligence leads to a slip and fall accident, victims can find themselves contending with long-term medical problems, damaged property, and, in the worst cases, lost income.
Fortunately, the Hoosier state provides its slip and fall accident victims with the right to take legal action against those parties who failed to protect them. If you or someone you know has recently been through a slip and fall accident, you can contact Vaughan & Vaughan for legal guidance. Our Carmel slip and fall accident attorneys can help you file a claim.
Understanding Your Slip and Fall Accident
When you step onto someone else’s property with their knowledge and permission, you enter into that person’s care. That person has an obligation to ensure that their property is safe for you to be on or that you’re warned of any dangers that may put you in harm’s way. In other words, a property owner must take reasonable steps to protect you from harm.
Indiana civil courts refer to that obligation as a property owner’s duty of care. Property owners who violate the duty owed to you, resulting in a slip and fall accident, become liable for your injuries. As such, you can take those negligent parties to civil court and demand that they help fund your recovery.
If you want to take legal action against a negligent landowner, you need to file a personal injury claim with an Indiana civil court. Your Carmel slip and fall accident lawyer should help you elaborate on the nature of your accident, the negligence involved, and the damages you believe you deserve.
The Overlap Between Premises Liability and Slip and Fall Accidents
There’s some significant overlap between Indiana’s premises liability cases and its slip and fall accident cases. In both situations, victims like you need to consider what role you played on another person’s property. That role determines what legal action to which you may have the right.
For example, invitees and licensees merit a comprehensive duty of care from a property owner. This means that invitees and licensees alike have the right to take a property owner to civil court in the wake of a slip and fall accident. Conversely, trespassers do not have the right to civil action unless they believe a property used undue violence when removing them from a lot.
Only child trespassers have the right to civil action after a slip and fall accident. Indiana’s attractive nuisance doctrine holds landowners liable for a child’s losses if that landowner fails to account for the possibility of a child trespasser on a lot that is reasonably appealing to minors.
If you’re unsure what your role on another person’s property was at the time of your fall, or if you want to discuss your right to take a child’s slip and fall losses to civil court, contact our attorneys. We can investigate your circumstances and make sure you pursue all of the legal avenues available to you.
When to File Your Slip and Fall Accident Claim
Indiana limits the amount of time in which slip and fall victims like you can file their personal injury claims. Adult slip and fall victims have only two years to investigate and compile a slip and fall accident claim, according to Indiana Code section 34-11-2-4. You cannot file a slip and fall claim with an Indiana civil court after your statute of limitations expires.
The only time the state makes an exception to this statute of limitations is when a slip and fall case involves an injured child. Injured children have until they turn 20 years old to bring a slip and fall case forward in civil court.
When to Call an Attorney After a Slip and Fall Accident
Two years can go by faster than you expect, especially if you’re pursuing medical care after a slip and fall accident. If you’re not sure whether or not you’ll have enough time to compile a comprehensive personal injury complaint, it’s in your best interest to have a lawyer put in the legwork for you.
Vaughan & Vaughan’s slip and fall accident attorneys in Carmel, IN, can take point on your case while you prioritize getting back to work or scheduling essential medical care. While you’re recovering, our team can:
- Interview bystanders
- Use our professional network to gather expert witness opinions
- Gather and investigate evidence from the scene of your accident
- Arrange settlement negotiations
- Prepare you for civil court
The state of Indiana does not require you to work with an attorney if you want to file a slip and fall accident claim. That said, working with an attorney can make it easier for you to secure the settlement you need to recover in a reasonable amount of time.
Evidence Makes Your Slip and Fall Case
You have the opportunity to make claims regarding the identity of an at-fault party and the value of your case’s losses after a slip and fall accident. Every claim you make, however, must be backed by viable evidence. You cannot submit a civil claim and expect it to deliver you compensation if you don’t defend the positions you take.
What does this mean for you? It means that both you and a representative should return to the scene of your accident and bring back data to effectively assert fault. This data can include:
- Video footage of your accident
- Records of physical debris or property damage
- Statements from bystanders
- Accident recreations
- Statements from expert witnesses
In many cases, it’s in your best interest to wait until you have evidence before making a claim regarding liability in a slip and fall case. You should also hold on to any invoices, bills, or expense reports you receive while pursuing care after your accident. When establishing your case’s value, you can file those documents as proof of losses.
Contact a Slip and Fall Accident Attorney Today
Property owners have a duty to protect you and your peers from accidents on their land. If you slip and fall due to a property owner’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. You can collaborate with a slip and fall accident attorney in Carmel, IN, to investigate your losses, compile your evidence, and present your case to a civil judge.
Vaughan & Vaughan works to make it as easy as possible for accident survivors like you to fight for loss-based settlements. For more information about our legal services and the process of filing a personal injury claim, contact our office. We can schedule your first free, no-obligation case consultation over the phone or through our online contact form.