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Personal Injury

Slips, Trips and Falls Claims

No matter how careful you are, accidents can happen. However, if you are injured because someone failed in their duty to adequately reduce the risk of injury, our solicitors can help. We specialise in compensation claims for slips, trips and falls. By holding someone to account, you may also reduce the risk of the same accident happening to another person.

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What are the types of slips, trips and falls?

Slips, trips and falls sound similar, but they are different types of accidents.

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A slip is when you lose balance on a slippery surface such as a loose floorboard, polished floor, wet or muddy floor or a broken ramp.

When you trip, you fall to the ground because your leg or your foot has hit something. Clutter left in walkways, damaged paths, exposed cables and uneven paving stones are all examples of trip hazards.

Falls can be the result of a slip or a trip. Poor lighting, such as streetlamps not working, can also cause slips or trips that lead to falls.

Is somebody responsible for your accident?

Nearly every place outside the home is covered by the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957. This Act requires those with control over premises to be responsible for preventing hazards that might harm visitors.

For workplaces, the relevant legislation is the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. This ensures that employers are responsible for their employees’ health, safety, and welfare in the workplace.

Under this legislation, there is the responsibility to:

  • Assess and create an environment that is as safe as possible.
  • Display clear signs warning people about risks, e.g. slippery floors.
  • Make sure fixtures and fittings are maintained.
  • Take extra safety precautions if children or vulnerable adults use the premises.
  • Not conduct unsafe activities on the premises, which could cause injury to another person.

When safety precautions are inadequate, you may be able to claim compensation for a slip, trip or fall.

Who is responsible for your accident?

Most of the time, the person in control of premises are responsible for an accident that was not your fault. These are examples of common places where accidents take place:

Claims can be brought against local authorities for poorly maintained playground equipment, potholes, uneven paving slabs, defective drain covers and other dangerous equipment and surfaces. Local authorities or companies instructed by them are responsible for carrying out regular maintenance work.

Employers have a duty of care to employees and visitors. Compensation claims can be brought against the Employer and/or whoever controls the premises.

Potholes and barriers in car parks can cause accidents. Sometimes the local authority is responsible, but if it is a privately owned car park, the owner is responsible.

Landlords are responsible for keeping their properties safe and well-maintained. Landlords’ responsibilities are covered under the Defective Premises Act 1972. They must repair any faults that are reported to them by their tenants as soon as possible.

Accidents happen in schools all the time. They can be a result of poor site maintenance or the negligence of staff.

Slippery floors and merchandise left in aisles are common causes of trips, slips and falls.

Is there a time limit for slips, trips and falls claims?

You normally have three years from the date of an accident to make a slip, trip or fall claim. This is longer if you are claiming compensation on behalf of somebody with a mental impairment or a child.

Those below the age of eighteen cannot claim compensation themselves until their 18th birthday. They then have three years from their 18th birthday to make a claim.

Despite legal time limits, it is best to start a claim as soon as possible because it is easier to gather evidence while the accident is still clear in people’s minds.

What information do you need to start a claim?

The following evidence is helpful to support your claim:

  • A copy of the accident book record. If you reported an accident at work or in a shop, it should be recorded in their accident book. You are entitled to receive a copy.
  • Witness contact details.
  • Photographs of your injuries, location or cause of the accident. It is helpful if photographs are taken soon after your accident.
  • Medical evidence. See a doctor as soon as possible after your accident. As well as looking after your injury, they will also be able to provide evidence.
  • Your own notes. Note down the details of what happened as soon as you can after the accident.

The more documented evidence you have supporting your claim, the easier it is to build a strong case.

How much can I claim?

The amount of compensation you can claim depends on how your injury has affected your life and will continue to impact your life in future.

Claims are based on two areas:

General damages

This is based on your physical and mental pain and suffering and the reduction in your quality of life. Life quality is the impact your injury has had on your relationships and your ability to enjoy the same activities as before the accident.

Special damages

Special damages compensate you for financial losses. This covers your loss of earnings now and likely loss of earnings in the future, the impact the injury will have on your career opportunities, and the cost of medical treatment, special equipment, rehabilitation and day-to-day care.

Have any questions or need any help?

Our team of specialist lawyers are experts in their field. Be confident in their advice and decisions to help get the right outcome for you. Contact us today to see how we can help