Miami Slip and Fall

Slip and fall cases are commonly referred to as premises liability claims and fall under tort law. A tort is, simply put, a civil wrong. Slip and fall accidents are handled under so-called under tort law. A Miami slip and fall occurs when someone is injured because of an unsafe condition on a property, whether the land is public, a private residence, or commercial building, when the accident was caused by the person or entity who owns or controls the property’s negligent actions. While it is possible for an injured victim to be found to have contributed to the accident that caused the injuries, Florida law still allows an injured party to recover some damages if the other parties involved, called a defendant, is found to be at fault. Some of the most common Miami slip and fall accidents occur in grocery stores such as Publix, Winn-Dixie or Walmart. Due to the high volume of customers shopping in those stores, accidental dropping of liquids may occur. Because these stores are aware that customers may drop things, they have an obligation or duty to routinely inspect their stores for those dangers. Unfortunately, for a number of reasons, many of which involve negligence, often those hazards are not cleaned in a timely manner and another customer may slip, fall and suffer serious injuries.

Establishing Fault

The injured victim seeking monetary compensation for injuries suffered, referred to as the plaintiff in a slip and fall lawsuit, must prove the following to succeed in obtaining an award from a court:

  • The plaintiff was lawfully on the property. This means, legally speaking, that he or she must have been an invitee or licensee;

  • The defendant(s) were negligent. The owner or controller of the premise knew, or should have known, of the dangerous condition and failed to warn, repair, or improperly maintained the dangerous condition that caused the harm;

  • Causation. The plaintiff must prove that the defendant(s)’ negligent behavior was the actual and proximate cause of his or her injuries, and monetary compensation is an appropriate remedy.

Determining Damages

Damages, or monetary compensation, awarded in a Miami slip and fall case often includes funds to cover medical expenses, past and future loss of income, and temporary or permanent disability, to name a few. In general, three types of negligence standards may be used by a court when determining the amount of compensatory damages owed to a slip and fall accident victim. Specifically, the are referred to as:

  • Contributory negligence: This is a zero-sum determination which is the law in many states, but luckily not Florida. For a plaintiff to be awarded damages, that he or she cannot be found responsible for causing any portion of the accident.

  • Modified comparative negligence: This allows a plaintiff to win an award but only if he or she is found to be less liable for causing the accident that resulted in injuries than the defendant.

  • Pure comparative negligence: Under this negligence standard, an injured plaintiff may be awarded monetary compensation even if he or she is found to be partially liable for the accident. Under this standard, monetary damages are awarded as a percentage of the responsibility found for each party.

Florida is a pure comparative negligence state. As such, the amount a plaintiff may be awarded is directly reduced by the percentage amount he or she was found to be at fault for causing the accident.

Legal Help in Miami

Sometimes a Miami slip and fall may seem unimportant, only to later cause painful health conditions or even serious injuries. More often than not the responsibility of a slip and fall accident lies on the owner of the property or the person or entity who had control over the premises. If you or someone you know has been injured in a Miami slip and fall accident, contact the Law Offices of Joseph I. Lipsky, P.A. today to preserve your rights under the law. Call 305-821-7333 today to schedule your initial, free case evaluation.

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