Ten Commandments After a Slip and Fall Accident
Slip and fall accidents can cause severe injury. What you do after the accident can make or break your case. Accordingly, here’s what you should do right after a slip and fall:
1. REPORT THE SLIP AND FALL ACCIDENT to the police, and to the store manager, landlord, homeowner, or person in charge of the scene. Do this WHILE STILL AT THE SCENE.
2. TRUTHFULLY TELL SUCH PEOPLE JUST THE FACTS of what happened. DON’T ARGUE. Don’t become overly emotional.
3. OBTAIN THE PROPERTY OWNER’S AND/OR STORE OPERATOR’S NAME, ADDRESS, PHONE NUMBER, AND EMAIL ADDRESS. Again, no arguing.
4. TAKE PHOTOS of the accident scene. Photograph the tripping hazard. Photograph any surveillance cameras. And photograph your injuries.
5. OBTAIN ANY WITNESS’ NAME, ADDRESS, PHONE NUMBER AND EMAIL.
6. CALL AN AMBULANCE. Let them take you to the emergency room to get immediate treatment.
7. KEEP, DON’T CLEAN AND DON’T WEAR AGAIN THE SHOES AND CLOTHING THAT YOU WORE when you fell.
8. ASK FOR AND KEEP COPIES OF ALL EVIDENCE connected with the accident. These include POLICE REPORTS, STORE ACCIDENT REPORTS, and MEDICAL REPORTS. Also hospital reports and prescriptions. Write down the name and address all medical providers. On the same day as the accident, you should request in writing that any SURVEILLANCE VIDEO be preserved, and a copy of the video sent to you. (Keep a copy of your letter and obtain a signed delivery receipt.)
9.DON’T DISCUSS THE CASE WITH ANYONE ELSE. Especially the owner’s insurance company. Anything you say may be held against you. Therefore, DON’T SIGN ANYTHING without consulting a lawyer first. (But you CAN sign medical consent forms necessary for immediate treatment.)
10. Call a slip and fall attorney as soon as possible. Preferably not later than when you leave the emergency room. Otherwise, evidence may be lost. Moreover, witnesses’ memories may fade.