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Slipped and Fell on Oil in Parking Lot

Slipping happens all the time and often causes serious injuries to the hip, back, shoulder, and spine, as well as head trauma. Businesses and property owners are responsible for maintaining their premises, so whether you fell in a parking lot or sidewalk, they may be held liable for your injuries. Many things can cause a parking lot slip and fall, and oil is one of them. If you slipped and fell because of oil in a parking lot, you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries. Talk to a personal injury lawyer to learn more about your specific case.

Slip and Fall Accidents

Owners and businesses must maintain their properties, keeping them safe for the public, and warning guests of potential hazards. This is also known as premises liability. Businesses demonstrate due diligence by putting out cones and hazard signs to protect guests from dangers. Maintaining the premises involves regular inspections, cleaning, and repairing problem areas. Among other liquids, oil leaks can cause concrete to become slippery. If owners fail to uphold proper maintenance, guests may injure themselves, especially on the hard concrete in parking lots. If you slip in a parking lot due to an oil spill that the owner should have taken care of, you may be able to receive compensation.

Who is Liable?

Figuring out who is liable in a slip and fall accident can often be difficult. Sometimes, multiple parties may be responsible for your accident. Identifying all potentially liable parties increases your opportunity to secure full compensation for your damages. An attorney will help you determine who you should file a claim against.

You may end up filing a claim against any of these parties for premises liability:

  • The Owner: Owners are responsible for inspecting and maintaining their property, including any parking lots and sidewalks on the premises. Failing to fix hazards or inform visitors of dangers is a form of negligence.
  • Operators of the Business: A business may rent rather than own a property. However, if the operator’s lease stipulates responsibility for maintenance and repair on the parking lot, they can be held liable for failing to adhere to the agreement. In some cases, both the owner and the business may be responsible. For example, even if parking lot maintenance falls upon the owner’s shoulders, the business still has the obligation to notify the owner if they are aware of the hazard.
  • Apartment Complex Landlords: Landlords are usually responsible for parking lot maintenance since it is a common area for tenants and guests. Likewise, they are liable if you fall due to their negligent upkeep.
  • Government: Maybe you slipped in a public area that falls under the city or county government’s domain. Filing a case against a governmental entity can be complicated and require specific steps to receive compensation. You will want to talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer about your options.

How Does Comparative Negligence Affect My Case?

Like we mentioned before, sometimes more than one party can be at fault in a parking lot slip and fall accident. In some cases, the victim may also carry some liability for their injuries. Disregarding hazard signs or texting while walking can be considered negligence on the victim’s part. Thankfully, Florida has comparative fault laws that help victims receive compensation even when they are partially to blame for the incident.

Comparative fault laws consider the blame of both parties and determine the percentage of fault that they carry. What does this mean for you? This means that, even if you are found 20% responsible for the accident, you still receive partial compensation. The percentage of liability that you carry, 20% in this case, is taken out of the compensation amount you would have originally received.

What to Do In a Slip and Fall Accident

Parking lot slip and fall accidents cause serious injuries. Be sure to care for your health before you do anything else. However, if you fell on oil in a parking lot, there are few things you should do both for yourself and to ensure the at-fault party is held liable.

  • Seek Medical Attention: When an accident occurs, your health is more important than anything else. Get medical attention immediately. By receiving medical care, you also ensure that any injuries you sustained are verified as being a result of the accident.
  • Inspect your Surroundings: If you can, determine what caused the fall. You want to be able to show the exact cause of your accident as evidence.
  • Talk to Witnesses: Ask witnesses to give a statement. Their account can strengthen your case by backing up your claim.
  • Take Pictures: Photograph the accident scene, the oil spill, and your injuries as soon as you can. These photos are evidence that corroborates your story and demonstrates the severity of your injuries as a direct result of the accident.
  • Collect Evidence: Many items that you may not ordinarily think about can be evidence in a slip and fall case. For example, your shoes and clothes may get scuffed or torn due to your fall. Parking lots often have surveillance cameras. You will want this footage to confirm your story. Keep all your medical records and receipts. These will make it easier to receive compensation for medical bills. Also, keep track of days taken off work or lost wages due to your injury.
  • Follow All Procedures: Make sure you fill out an accident report or inform the property owner. Always relay accurate information to protect your claim’s validity.
  • Talk to an Attorney: Filing a claim can be a long and complicated process. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you follow the necessary procedures, file all the correct paperwork, collect evidence, and represent and negotiate your case for you.

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