After you fall on someone else’s property, you may be wondering, what should I do immediately after a slip and fall? You should seek medical treatment for your injuries, either by going to the emergency room or by visiting your own doctor. Receive a diagnosis about your prognosis, so you can follow a treatment plan that the doctor provides for you.
Once you are able, you need to report the slip and fall accident to the property owner, should he or she not already know about it.
Remember, property owners have a duty to protect visitors from injury, according to Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §51-3-1.
Get Medical Treatment for Your Slip and Fall Injuries
In a case like this, understand that seeking medical treatment is extremely important. You do not want to ignore your injuries from slipping and falling, trying to show a brave face, only to realize a few weeks down the road that you are looking at a significant impairment to your quality of life, leaving you unable to work like you did in the past.
By delaying treatment, you could place your ability to receive a fair settlement in some jeopardy as well. The insurance company for the property owner may attempt to argue that you are not as seriously injured as you are claiming, because you did not seek treatment immediately.
Delaying treatment does not mean that you will forfeit your right to pursue an injury claim. But it can create difficulties for your slip and fall case. You do have up to two years to begin the process of filing an injury claim, according to Georgia’s OCGA §9-3-33, but contacting a slip and fall attorney sooner is always a good idea.
Follow Your Doctor’s Advice to Treat Injuries from Slipping and Falling
Once your doctor has put together a treatment plan for you, it is extremely important that you follow the instructions and the timeline precisely. Missing a medical appointment or refusing to follow the doctor’s advice could allow the insurer to argue that you are not injured as seriously as you are claiming.
If you believe you are not receiving the proper treatment from your current or original doctor, you should seek a second opinion about your case, rather than just stopping treatment or changing treatment on your own.
For a free legal consultation, call (404) 888-8888
Inspect the Scene Where You Slipped and Fell
If possible, you should try to take notes about the scene, as well as photographs or videos. If you are unable to do any of these things on your own, perhaps a friend or family member can help with this.
If emergency personnel are called to the scene, they may have documented the scene also, but it never hurts to have your own photographs and evidence.
It is important to collect this type of information as soon after you have fallen as possible. If this does not happen, it is possible that the property owner may move some things around or change the scene to make it appear as though he or she had properly cared for the property, and that your fall was completely your fault.
Take Notes About What May Have Caused You to Slip and Fall
While the accident’s facts are still fresh in your mind, you may want to write down some notes about what happened. It can be easy to forget details in the days and weeks after slipping and falling, so you may want to write down what happened. Focus on certain things about the scene that could indicate liability, including:
- Was there proper lighting installed in the area?
- Was a light bulb burned out, causing you to miss seeing a hazard?
- Did the property owner fail to move hazards?
- Was a fence or security gate in disrepair?
- Was there spilled food, grease, or water on the floor, leading to a slip?
- Was a sidewalk in disrepair, causing you to trip?
- Did a handrail or another type of railing give way when you leaned on it?
Get Help Today by Contacting the Office of a Slip and Fall Lawyer
So what should I do immediately after a slip and fall? You should seek medical care for your injuries as soon as possible. This may mean that you ride to the hospital in an ambulance, or it may mean that you will need to visit an emergency room or your family doctor as soon as possible after the fall.
Once you have a diagnosis in hand, you may want to contact a slip and fall injury attorney to represent your interests in a potential claim. You may need some help from an attorney when negotiating a settlement with the insurance company for the property owner.
The team at Bader Scott Injury Lawyers will fight tirelessly to defend your right to receive the fairest possible settlement. Insurers may try to claim that you made an error, meaning you played a role in your own slip and fall accident, which could reduce your settlement amount. We can help show you did nothing wrong. Contact our office today at (404) 888-8888 for a free consultation.