According to the United States Center for Disease Control (CDC), falls are the leading cause of nonfatal medically attended injuries in the United States. Physical injuries associated with falling include fractures, contusions, and lacerations. Hip, knee, leg and ankle fractures are especially debilitating for older adults. Injuries experienced as a result of falling may lead to a decrease in the ability to perform activities of daily living. At times, those injured in a fall do not return to their pre-level of physical functioning.
Aside from the physical injuries and limitations that often result from a fall, there are psychological consequences of experiencing a fall injury. Studies have shown that a fall injury may lead to increased depressive symptoms, including the fear of being institutionalized. Ultimately, the fear of another fall may lead to decreases in the quality of life, due to restricting usual activities in the hope of avoiding another fall.
Approximately three-fourths of fall injuries occur in or around a home. The remaining fall injuries occur in public buildings, supermarkets, shopping malls, recreation areas, schools, industrial areas, streets, parking lots, etc. In addition, individuals are involved in a fall injury on stairs, ramps, escalators, elevators, or improperly placed rugs or furniture.
Falls can be caused by the failure to properly maintain one’s property or premises. Businesses are required to ensure that individuals who enter their premises are safe from dangerous conditions which can cause a person to fall. Certain businesses are required to conduct regular inspections of their property to maintain their premises in a safe condition. Under certain circumstances, a property owner may be required to post signs warning of a potential slipping/tripping hazard.
Building owners are required to ensure that any alteration to the physical appearance of a building complies with governmental building codes. Ramps, handrails, stairs, curbs, sidewalks, etc. are all required to be a specific height, length, and width.
If you have fallen, you will likely have many questions.
- Who is going to pay for my medical bills?
- If I miss time from work, will I be reimbursed for my lost wages?
- Which doctor should I see to help me recover from my injuries?
- What type of doctor is best for me?
- Should I go see my family doctor or a medical specialist?
- Will I require some special medical tests to diagnose my injuries?
- Should I talk to an insurance company?
- Should I provide a recorded statement or complete numerous forms?
- Should I accept a settlement offer, if one is made?
The best decision you can make before doing anything is to speak with a lawyer and ask all of these questions. This will insure that your rights are properly protected.
- After being involved in a fall, you may not be quite sure what to do. By calling or contacting me, I will:
- Personally help you through this ordeal.
- Provide appropriate legal advice to you.
- If you miss work, I will immediately seek to have your lost wages reimbursed, if you have the appropriate insurance coverage.
- If you require medical attention and you do not know the name of a reputable medical specialist, I will personally provide you with a list of medical specialists who are experts in treating individuals injured in motor vehicle collisions.
As a former trial attorney for major insurance companies, I will only recommend respected medical specialists who are concerned about your physical well-being and who are respected in both the medical and legal community.
If you have been injured in a fall and need an experienced premises liability lawyer, please contact me, Steven Ainbinder, for a free, confidential consultation. I personally believe that our system of justice works best when all sides have a skilled professional representing their clients.