Suffered A Slip, Trip Or Fall In A Public Place? We will Use Over 40 Years Of Experience To Get You The Best Outcome
What you’ll discover on this page:
- Slip, Trip and Fall Accidents Can Be Avoided – Here’s How
- Who is Responsible For Slip, Trip And Fall Injuries In Victoria?
- Benefits available to you for your injury
- Estimated timeline to get compensation after a slip, trip or fall accident
- Why choose Henry Carus + Associates
Unfortunately slips, trips and falls in public spaces are an all too familiar occurrence. The statistics are quite alarming with the number of persons attending trauma hospitals following a fall.
Most of these falls occur in a public space and are covered by the laws dealing with public liability claims. The focus at Henry Carus + Associates immediately with these claims is to understand how the accident happened in order to allow us the best opportunity to achieve not only a successful outcome but when that is truly special to the person injured.
As always, we aim to do a comprehensive investigation starting with gathering as much evidence from the injured client directly, attending the accident site ASAP to understand what happened and ensuring that relevant evidence is preserved from the start with measurements and photographs, and if needed even an expert, seeking out all witnesses and getting their versions of what occurred soon afterwards before their memory fades, and last seeking out from those who are responsible for the accident site copies of any reports prepared or CCTV footage retained of the accident.
With the experience of our Henry Carus we can easily make a very early assessment of how likely we are that we can win for a client, and many times it will be based on matters we have previously litigated against either the same defendants or similar defendants. Once we SEE the win, we start to plan out all the likely arguments that will be raised by these defendants to limit their responsibility or shift responsibility to our client and prepare our responses. Many times it is this early gathering of evidence and preparation for likely defence arguments that allows us to make a claim that would have won with much difficulty into one that our Firm can win easily and with a very financially beneficial outcome to our client.
Once the evidence is gathered about fault we turn to the next important issue, which is the extent of the injury or injuries suffered by the client. The law requires us to wait until the injuries are substantially stable to assess the extent of the injury or injuries in two ways:
- Whether the injury or injuries will satisfy the definition of a “significant injury” as required by the law to obtain compensation for pain and suffering damages; and
- The overall impact the injury or injuries will have on the quality of our client’s life, with whatever needs now arise for home assistance, medical care and treatment and any changes to the ability to earn income.
The concept of a “significant injury” is difficult for many to understand and at Henry Carus + Associates we not only take the time to explain the concept but more importantly the time to allow our client’s injuries to develop to ascertain if they will meet this definition. The law allows up to 3 years to commence a public liability claim, and although we may move super-fast to gather evidence about the accident, we are quite willing to allow our clients the time needed to see what will develop from their injuries.
One must keep in mind that the overall extent of compensation is directly related to the seriousness of the injuries suffered and the life -long effect they will have on the quality of a client’s life. So TIME, giving time after the accident, is often extremely helpful to achieve the best possible outcome for a client.
Slip, Trip And Fall Accidents Can Be Avoided – Here’s How
Falls in public places are not an inevitable part of life. Many of these accidents could be eliminated if the people responsible for maintaining properties took proper steps to keep their facilities reasonably safe.
The law puts a duty on the owners and occupiers of public places to eliminate unreasonably dangerous hazards that could cause someone to slip, trip and fall.
Some examples of common slip, trip and fall hazards – and possible preventive steps – include:
- The floors in the lobby of an office building become slick with rainwater brought in by workers and visitors. Placing absorbent doormats at the entry and having cleaners mop up the wet areas could prevent someone from slipping on the wet floor..
- A step in a dimly lit bar causes patrons to trip. This hazard could be avoided by highlighting the step with lights, a sign or some other measure that would call attention to it.
- Uneven pavement in a footpath in front of a shop causes shoppers to stumble. Those responsible for maintaining the paths should monitor their condition and make prompt repairs. Damaged pavement should be marked with signs or other warnings until repairs can be made.
- The deck around a hotel’s swimming pool becomes very slippery when water is splashed from the pool. The hotel owners could install friction strips that would give pedestrians surer footing on the deck.
- A wooden step that leads to the upper level of a building has become rotten and loose, posing a fall hazard. The owners or commercial tenants of the building should monitor the condition of all stairs and make repairs as soon as possible.
- Displays of merchandise in a department store block the aisles and pose a trip hazard. Store managers should make sure that customers can safely navigate the store without stumbling over clutter.
These are just a few examples of the many ways in which a slip, trip or fall accident can happen in a public place in Victoria – and the ways in which such accidents could be avoided. Our Henry Carus has over 40 years’ experience with such claims and has an unending list of examples of accidents that could have been avoided with proper measures.
The essential key to avoiding slip, trip and fall accidents typically involves those responsible for the property taking reasonable steps to monitor the facilities and address unreasonable hazards before someone gets hurt. Sadly, many times it is only after an accident that those responsible finally attend to the dangers posed.
Who’s Responsible For Slip, Trip And Fall Injuries In Victoria?
Individuals, companies, government agencies and others who own or control public places may be held responsible for slip, trip or fall accidents that result from their negligence, or failure to maintain reasonably safe conditions. Most of the time, it is the responsible party’s insurer that actually pays the claim.
Most of the time, it is the responsible party’s insurer that actually pays the claim.
Chi Hong is an example of us persisting with a claim, no matter how small the claim may be. Chi Hong came to us after she slipped on liquid at a well-known shopping centre in her community. She landed on her knee after the fall, resulting in a fracture that required surgery. Fortunately for Chi Hong, she recovered well from her injury. The Medical Panel found that she did not...Read Success Story »
Natasha came to us after a fall at a hardware superstore in Cranbourne. She had consulted another law firm who did not wish to take on her matter, as they did not believe she could win. We told her we could win for her. At the time of her accident in June 2014, Natasha was a 33 year old mother of 3. She was walking in between two stacks of...Read Success Story »
Keith is a lovely 90 year old gentleman who had an unfortunate fall at a golf club. He fell heavily on his left shoulder and sustained a left rotator cuff injury. Keith consulted another law firm who were not prepared to take on his case. When he came to us, we believed that we could do more for him . We made the 120 km return journey to the accident...Read Success Story »
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Benefits Available To Slip, Trip And Fall Victims In Victoria
Victims of a slip, trip or fall accident in a public place that was caused by someone else’s negligence may be entitled to a range of compensation, such as:
- Hospital bills and other medical expenses, including future costs
- Wages you are unable to earn due to work absences caused by your injuries, both past and future
- The pain, suffering and lost enjoyment of life you endured due to the accident
- The cost of hiring help to assist you with tasks at home that you are unable to perform because of your injuries
Estimated Timeline To Receive Your Compensation After A Slip, Trip And Fall Accident
The legal team at Henry Carus + Associates wastes no time getting to work on our clients’ personal injury claims. For us, early evidence is key to the success of a these types of cases. So right from the start we will devote a large amount of time to investigating the accident and, more often than not, we will visit the accident site so we can better understand the cause of the accident. Our clients normally see our Henry Carus at the accident scene as we have found his experience allows us to focus on what evidence is needed to ensure a successful outcome.
In addition to his own observations, we also take a careful and detailed statement from the client and from all witnesses as soon as possible to improve the accuracy of the recollections of those who witnessed the accident. We have seen the disasters of our legal firms seeking to gather evidence of witnesses years after an accident, and we seek never to be in that position.
Once we have this vital evidence in our hands, we have a solid base from which we can launch a successful case.
Our first priority is always to make sure that our client receives proper treatment for the injuries suffered in the accident. Once the client’s injuries have stabilised, we typically ask a doctor properly qualified to determine the degree of our client’s permanent impairment as required under the legislation and also ask the same doctor to provide us with a Wrongs Act Certificate. This certificate confirms that a person has suffered a “Significant Injury”, which has a definition in the legislation of meaning a total whole person impairment of greater that 5% as measured by a book known as the AMA Guides for Permanent Impairment (4th Edition).
After gathering all relevant evidence on how the accident happened, the necessary medical reports, and all needed medical records, we can start to formalize our views on the value of our client’s claim and then submit the claim to the responsible parties and forcefully pursue the maximum compensation our client deserves.
Many times those responsible forward the claim to their insurance company and the insurance company will try to manage the claim on its own. Unfortunately, we have found in our experience that those working for insurance companies have a limited idea of how much compensation our clients truly deserve, and we seek to move the claim to their insurance lawyers who not only know our Henry Carus well, but also have the experience to properly assess the extent of compensation that should be provided.
The Henry Carus + Associates Difference
For us, early evidence is key to the success of these types of cases. So right from the start we’ll devote a large amount of time investigating the accident and, more often than not, we will attend the accident site so we can better understand the cause of the accident.
Indeed, with more than 40 years of public liability experience we know the strength of a claim – and its outcome – depends greatly on what is seen and understood by visiting the accident site. Photos alone never are sufficient to us. Most of the time you have to physically attend to truly understand what has happened. Once we have this vital evidence in our hands, we have a solid base from which we can launch a successful case.