Who Is Responsible if I Slip and Fall at Someone Else’s House in Pennsylvania?
December 15, 2023
When you go over to a friend’s home or stop by a neighbor’s house, you certainly do not expect to get seriously injured. However, slip and fall accidents happen daily. Homeowners and landlords are responsible for the safety conditions of the properties they maintain. When a property owner welcomes guests onto their premises, they have a responsibility to make sure it is safe and free of hazards.
There are many ways a person can suffer an injury at someone else’s house, the most common being a slip and fall or trip and fall accident. These accidents can cause severe and even life-threatening injuries. If you were injured due to a slip and fall at someone else’s house in Pennsylvania, an experienced lawyer can help.
A slip and fall claim involves the liability of property owners, as well as those responsible for the safety of the premises. If you suffered an injury due to hazards and unsafe conditions on the property, a lawyer can help identify all negligent parties.
Parties who may be liable for a slip and fall injury may include:
- Property owners
- Maintenance companies
- Manufacturers and distributors
What Are Different Ways I Can Slip and Fall on Someone Else’s Property?
People go to holiday parties, summer cookouts, and other gatherings at the homes of friends and neighbors all the time. Whether you stop by someone’s house for a brief visit or a few hours, it only takes an instant to suffer a life-altering injury.
There are a host of ways you can sustain a slip and injury on someone else’s property, including:
- Slip and falls on spilled liquids
- Trip and falls on torn rugs or uneven flooring
- Accidents on stairs
- Inadequate lighting
- Accumulated snow or ice
- Broken steps or railings
- Cluttered walkways
- Lack of handrails
- Falling hazards
What Are Common Injuries Sustained at Other People’s Houses?
Injuries that can occur at a friend’s or neighbor’s home may be much more serious than many expect. These injuries can be life-changing and cause extreme financial and emotional strain.
Common injuries that may be sustained in a slip and fall include:
- Fractures and broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Neck and back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Muscle sprains and strains
- Soft tissue damage
- Hand injuries
- Foot injuries
How Can I Protect Myself After a Slip and Fall Accident?
It is natural to feel uncertain about what to do after an unexpected accident, especially at the home of someone you know. However, you must protect your health, safety, and best interests after any accident.
The most important step to take is to get medical attention. This is not only crucial for your health but also to document any medical treatment for future legal claims. Many injuries are severe but not immediately obvious, such as head injuries or bone fractures.
Slip and fall victims often feel embarrassed or assume it was their fault. It is important to remember not to fall into one of the following traps:
- I should have been paying better attention.
- I should have known not to be in that area.
- I am not really hurt that badly.
- My injury will get better on its own.
- I do not want to get anyone in trouble.
If you are injured in any way on someone else’s property, it is critical to do everything you can to take care of yourself. This means getting immediate medical attention. It also means contacting an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney will protect your rights and best interests at every step of your case.
Why Should I Hire a Slip and Fall Lawyer?
Cases involving an injury largely involve dealing with insurance companies. It is never a good idea to settle a claim on your own. Insurance companies notoriously attempt to limit settlement amounts or negate claims altogether.
Our Philadelphia slip and fall lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP have decades of experience successfully negotiating significant settlements for our injured clients. When you retain our legal services, you can be assured that we will fight for the best possible outcome of your case.
A slip and fall lawyer can help with your case in the following ways:
- Take over the details so you can focus on recovering from your injury.
- Handle all verbal and written communication with opposing parties.
- Thoroughly investigate the details of the accident and where it took place.
- Identify all liable parties and review available insurance coverage.
- Review all medical records and help coordinate your treatment.
- Work with medical and industry experts for testimony.
- Gather all discovery and evidence needed to prove your claim.
- Properly file claims prior to the statute of limitations.
- Take your case to trial for a higher jury verdict when appropriate.
What Damages Can I Recover for a Slip and Fall Injury?
At Galfand Berger LLP, we understand the impact a serious injury can have on all areas of your life. Our goal is to help you move forward and achieve justice.
You may be able to recover the following damages for your slip and fall injury:
- Current and future medical expenses
- Lost wages and reduced earning capacity
- Out-of-pocket costs for medications
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Galfand Berger LLP has an unwavering reputation for recovering millions in compensation for clients in slip and fall cases. Some of our past cases:
- $10 million recovery for construction site fall: Our client was a 40-year-old construction framer who fell from the second floor of a house he was working on under construction. He suffered multiple skull fractures and a severe TBI. Our client’s doctors opined that he would never fully recover. Sadly, our client passed away four months after the parties reached a settlement, leaving behind two teenage children. We filed claims against multiple parties, alleging a failure to provide proper fall protection, violation of their policies and procedures, and violation of the OSHA guardrail mandates. We argued that our client’s catastrophic injuries were preventable. The defendants challenged every aspect of our case, going so far as to question whether our client had even fallen. Ultimately, we secured a settlement of $10,000,000 for our client’s family.
- $8 million recovery for construction site accident: Our client was performing his job duties with a framing subcontractor on the construction of a single-family house when he slipped and fell 18 feet to the floor of the foyer below. He was working in an unguarded, unprotected area while installing lateral bracing on the bottom chords of the trusses above the second-floor foyer of the subdivision home. As a result, our client suffered multiple severe injuries, including an open degloving wound of the forehead and scalp and a mild TBI. We argued that the defendants’ failure to provide adequate fall protection at an unprotected height in excess of 6 feet caused our client’s fall and injuries. We further claimed that the property owner did not prepare an incident or accident report as was required under its own safety program. The property owner also failed to report the accident to OSHA as required. The case was resolved for a global settlement of $8 million on the seventh day of trial.
- 1,750,000 recovery in premises liability Dram Shop action: Our clients were the parents of a 19-year-old male University of Scranton student who fell to his death after a night of celebrating his upcoming birthday. Among other negligent parties, we also sued the property owner of the duplex where the young man fell, partly due to the lack of a handrail. We successfully handled the case and settled the matter with all defendants before trial for a total of $1,750,000.
- $700,000 settlement for elevator injury: Our client suffered serious injuries while stepping out of an elevator that continued to move upwards after the doors opened. It caused her to step out into thin air and fall to the floor. She sustained injuries to her knee, wrist, shoulders, and neck and missed significant time from work. We brought claims against the building owner and the elevator maintenance company under contract to inspect and repair the elevator. Our investigation revealed that the subject elevator had a history of mis-leveling. The service company had been out to repair the elevator several times in the weeks leading up to our client’s injuries. Despite knowing of the dangerous condition of the elevator, the building owner kept the elevator in service without providing any warnings to the public about the risk of mis-leveling. We settled the matter for $700,000.
Our Philadelphia Slip and Fall Lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP Are Relentless Advocates
Our Philadelphia slip and fall lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP are top-rated in our region. If you or a loved one suffered a slip and fall injury, call us at 800-222-USWA (8792) or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Conveniently located in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading, Pennsylvania, we proudly serve clients in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Allentown and Harrisburg.