How Does Comparative Negligence Affect a Slip and Fall Case?
Let Us Evaluate Your Slip and Fall Accident Case
When you are on someone else’s property and slip and fall, you will be focused on the injuries you suffered. However, the property owner may be claiming the accident was your fault. In doing so, they are bringing the concept of comparative negligence into play, which could impact how much compensation you would receive from a lawsuit. But at the same time, it could be the catalyst that finds you gaining little if anything following your accident. Thus, prior to filing a personal injury lawsuit after your slip and fall accident, talk to a Los Angeles personal injury attorney to learn more about how comparative negligence could factor into your situation.
Nuts and Bolts of Slip and Fall Accidents
To win your lawsuit after a slip and fall accident, you and your slip and fall lawyer in Los Angeles turns to in these cases will need to prove the property owner was negligent in maintaining the property in a safe and reasonable condition. However, demonstrating the property was in poor condition at the time of your accident does not necessarily mean the property owner had been negligent. To win your case, your slip and fall accident lawyer must prove the owner knew of the unsafe conditions and failed to take the steps necessary to fix the problem.
The Burden of Proof
As to how comparative negligence applies to slip and fall accidents, much of it revolves around the burden of proof. The word “comparative” is used because when your case goes to trial and is being heard by a jury, the members of that jury are comparing the defendant’s negligence with any negligence on your part. As for the burden of proof, this tends to rest on the defendant. Rather than needing to prove you were not negligent leading up to the accident, the defendant must prove you did something wrong or knew of unsafe conditions and failed to take proper precautions prior to your accident. Since you will need experienced legal counsel to withstand any arguments made by the defendant’s lawyers, hire an injury attorney Los Angeles accident victims rely on from Grey Law to win your case.
Details of Comparative Negligence
When comparative negligence plays a part in a slip and fall accident, it will only do so once a judge or jury has decided the defendant in your case was in fact negligent. However, should the jury determine the defendant was not negligent and thus did nothing to cause your injuries, the case is over and so are your chances of gaining compensation for your injuries. Ultimately, comparative negligence comes down to a numbers game and percentages of negligence. Thus, if a jury believes you were only 20% negligent while the defendant was 80% negligent, you would essentially be awarded 80% of whatever amount a jury saw fit to recommend regarding financial compensation for your injuries. To ensure you are able to get the maximum compensation for your injuries, rely on a Grey Law trip and fall lawyer who victims trust to prove their case in court.
Modified Comparative Negligence
In some situations, modified comparative negligence may be applied to your case. A very common form of comparative negligence, modified comparative negligence simply means you as the plaintiff must be shown to not have been more at-fault for your accident than the defendant. As such, should a jury determine you were 51% responsible for your accident, you would get nothing in regards to compensation. However, should a jury determine you and the defendant were equally to blame for what transpired, you would still win your case, but at a reduced amount of compensation. In these situations, should a jury award the plaintiff $100,000 for injuries sustained in the accident, the judge overseeing your case would state the verdict is in favor of the plaintiff for $50,000. Since you will need every dollar possible to pay your medical bills, hire a Grey Law Los Angeles slip and fall lawyer to represent you in court.
Fortunately for you as the plaintiff, few states still rely on contributory negligence rules when examining slip and fall accident cases. If they did, chances are almost all plaintiffs in these types of cases would come out of court on the losing side. When contributory negligence rules have been applied in slip and fall cases, plaintiffs would lose their case if a judge or jury determined the plaintiff was only one percent negligent, offering virtually no leeway for proving otherwise.
Having a Valid Claim
When speaking to a slip and fall accident lawyer Los Angeles turns to for advice at Grey Law, you will need to show your attorney you have a valid claim to pursue a slip and fall accident lawsuit. For example, if you have photos of the accident scene showing the area in question was in disrepair, this could strengthen your case. In addition, if you should slip and fall at a business where video footage could show a spill in an aisle was not cleaned up immediately or that there were no signs or cones around the area indicating a slippery floor, your falling injury attorney Los Angeles clients trust could use this in court or to pressure an insurance company into reaching an out-of-court settlement.
Gaining Maximum Compensation
In any slip and fall accident, the slip and fall accident lawyer you hire from Grey Law will go for the maximum amount of compensation. Whether you suffered broken bones, back injuries, a concussion, or other injuries, you will have thousands of dollars in medical expenses as well as lost income from being unable to work. Therefore, do all you can to work with your Los Angeles lawyer to make your case as solid as possible.
To learn more about how to gain compensation following your slip and fall accident, schedule a meeting with Grey Law and discuss your accident with a trip and fall attorney Los Angeles victims know will always fight hard for them from start to finish.
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