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  • What Should I Do if I Slip and Fall at Work?

    Our Skilled Philadelphia Slip and Fall Lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP Advocate for Clients Injured in the WorkplaceSlip and fall accidents are among the most common workplace accidents. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that 22 percent of workplace slip and fall accidents cause workers to miss more than a month and are the leading cause of workplace injuries in certain industries.

    The Pennsylvania Bureau of Workers’ Compensation receives over 160,000 work-related injury claims yearly, many caused by slip and fall accidents. Some of the most common causes of work-related slip and fall accidents include:

    • Broken, cracked, wet, or uneven floors, sidewalks, or parking lots
    • Debris on floors and walkways
    • Icy ground
    • Inadequate or missing lighting
    • Liquid spills
    • Loose cables or electrical cords
    • Loose carpeting, flooring, or mats
    • Missing or broken handrails
    • Obstacles in pathways
    • Potholes in the parking lot or garage
    • Sharp edges
    • Weak or damaged furniture

    If you are injured in a slip and fall accident at work, there are certain steps you should take, including the following:

    • Report the accident: Report the accident and injuries to your supervisor, manager, or HR department immediately in accordance with company policies about accident reporting. Most insurance companies require employers to file an official report of the accident and injuries within a short timeframe, so be detailed in your account of the accident. You are entitled to a copy of the report. The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act requires that injuries be reported within 120 days of the injury.   Sooner, is always better, but if your employer says that they have a policy that all work injuries must be reported within 3 days or a week for example, this is contrary to Pennsylvania law.
    • Document the scene: Photograph the scene, including the hazardous condition that leads to the accident, your injuries, and any other contributing factors.
    • Gather witness statements: Gather contact information and a statement from any witnesses and ask them to share any photos or videos they may have taken of the accident.
    • Seek medical attention: Obtain a medical evaluation right away, even if you think your injuries are minor. Certain medical conditions do not present immediate symptoms but can be life-threatening if left untreated, particularly if you hit your head in the fall. A medical report is also needed for your claims.  It’s important to document your injuries.
    • Consult a lawyer: Workers’ Compensation and premises liability laws are challenging and complex. One simple mistake when applying can result in a denied claim. An experienced lawyer will review the circumstances of your accident, explain your legal rights and options, and help you navigate the claims process.

    Additionally, minimize conversation and do not discuss the accident beyond the facts of what happened with your employer, the property owner, or insurance companies. Do not post photos or make comments regarding the accident on social media. What you say can be used against you during the claims process. Let your lawyer handle all communication and negotiations to protect your rights and best interests.

    What Are Common Slip and Fall Injuries?

    A wide range of injuries can result from slip and fall accidents. The severity of injuries depends on how far you fall, how hard you fall, and the level of impact. The most common injuries include:

    • Broken bones and fractures: Slip and fall accidents commonly cause bone breaks or fractures, including fingers, hands, and wrists from trying to prevent the fall, to limbs, ankles, ribs, hips, and pelvis.
    • Hand, leg, and ankle injuries: Slip and fall accidents often lead to hand injuries. Additionally, leg and ankle injuries, such as strains, sprains, or fractures, can occur due to sudden twists during the fall.


    • Head and neck injuries: The head and neck are commonly injured in slip and fall accidents from striking a hard object that can cause serious injuries, such as brain trauma or paralysis.
    • Back injuries: Slip and fall accidents can cause significant back injuries, ranging from strains and sprains to more severe conditions like spinal fractures. These injuries can lead to chronic pain, limited mobility, and long-term disability.
    • Knee injuries: Slip and fall accidents frequently lead to twisting, popping, dislocating, or breaking of the knees, depending on the type of fall.
    • Cuts, scrapes, and bruises: Skin damage and bruising almost always accompany a slip and fall accident.
    • Nerve damage: The force of impact can cause severe nerve damage and injury, such as compressing, stretching, crushing, or tearing of the nerves.
    • Punctures: Sharp objects can cause punctures to skin, tissue, and organs, resulting in dangerous internal bleeding.
    • Soft tissue damage: Muscles, tendons, and ligaments are the body’s soft tissues, and any type of fall typically includes some form of soft tissue damage, such as swelling, bruising, sprains, strains, contusions, and tendinitis.
    • Spinal cord injuries: Spinal cord injuries may occur in slip and fall injruies.  They can be life-threatening, requiring immediate medical attention. The higher up an injury is in the spinal cord, the more extensive the damage, frequently resulting in some form of paralysis and permanent disability.
    • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs): Traumatic brain injuries can result when the head is struck during the fall. Injuries to the brain are not always immediately known, and symptoms may not develop for hours or days, but this kind of head trauma can be life-threatening if untreated.

    Is My Employer Responsible for My Slip and Fall Injuries?

    Employers in Pennsylvania are required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance for their employees, which provides benefits such as wage loss benefits and payment for medical treatment. You may be entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits, but depending on the circumstances of the accident, you may also be eligible to file a premises liability claim if a third party’s negligence led to the slip and fall accident.

    Pennsylvania law states that an individual or company property owner may be responsible for certain injuries people suffer on the property based on the owner’s “duty of care” to maintain safe and hazard-free premises. This duty includes those who are working on the property as well as those just visiting. If an owner is negligent and fails to fulfill this duty, you may be entitled to additional damages for your injuries.

    Falls are the most common type of premises liability cases. Workers’ Compensation benefits are limited, and the damages you can recover through a third-party lawsuit can more fully compensate you for your injuries and losses. Potential liable third parties include:

    • Property owners
    • Maintenance crews
    • General contractors and subcontractors
    • Vendors
    • Product manufacturers
    • Equipment and machinery repair businesses
    • Inspection officials

    Galfand Berger LLP Can Assist With Your Slip and Fall Claim

    Our Philadelphia slip and fall lawyers have decades of experience, securing millions of dollars in compensation. Some of our cases:

    • We secured a $2.5 million settlement for a truck driver who fell 12 feet from the tanker truck he was piloting while trying to transfer liquid asphalt into the tank at a Koch refinery, suffering a debilitating injury. We were able to establish that the accident occurred due to lax safety precautions.
    • We secured a $1.4 million verdict for a worker who suffered severe fractured heel injuries when an improperly secured load of pipes dislodged from a truck, causing him to fall and be struck. We successfully argued that the defendant should have better secured the pipes that struck our client.

    Our Skilled Philadelphia Slip and Fall Lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP Advocate for Clients Injured in the Workplace

    If you have suffered injuries in a slip and fall accident at work due to someone else’s negligence, our Philadelphia slip and fall lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP can help you seek justice and the compensation you deserve. Call us at 800-222-USWA (8792) or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading, Pennsylvania, we serve clients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including Allentown and Harrisburg.

    1-800-222-USWA (8792)