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IL injury lawyerThere are more moving parts to a slip and fall claim than you might think. It seems like it should be simple - you were walking through a store or restaurant, there was liquid on the floor, and you slipped on it and got hurt, so the person or entity charged with maintaining the premises pays. In real life, it is not always quite that simple. Slip and fall cases can be a bit more complex than they initially appear. The simple fact that you did slip in something and fall down is not generally enough to show that the premises owner or manager was somehow negligent in causing your injuries. Your attorney will want to conduct a more thorough investigation, which is why calling one as soon as possible after the accident is so important. The faster you get an attorney on your case, the more evidence is likely to be available.

What Legal Rules Apply to Slip and Fall Accidents?

Aside from showing that you slipped and fell and got hurt, you will also need to prove that there was some amount of carelessness or wrongdoing on the part of the person tasked with keeping the premises safe. This can be easier said than done. Some legal rules that could affect your claim include:

  • Proving knowledge - Odds are, you have at some point found a bit of water on your own floor at home without being entirely sure how it got there. In a public setting, spills happen all the time and are not always the premises owner’s fault. You will need to demonstrate that someone who had a duty to keep the establishment safe either actually knew about the spill or should have known about the spill before you got hurt.
  • Cause of spill - No one can stop it from raining or snowing outside, and there is a limit to what retail establishments and restaurants can do about patrons tracking it in on their shoes. You may have a much more difficult time if your slip was weather-related.
  • Contributory negligence - In many cases, a slip and fall is not 100% the fault of the establishment, nor is it 100% the fault of the individual who fell. In Illinois, the fault can be split. If you contributed to your accident in some way, the amount of your award could be reduced.

An attorney can help you better understand how these rules could apply to your individual situation.

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The Slip and Fall Settlement Process

Posted on in Slip & Fall

In some cases, slip and fall lawsuits are resolved through a legal settlement process without proceeding to trial.

Understanding the Settlement Process

Many slip and fall injuries are settled out of court, if parties can agree on a fair payment amount to cover the injury victim’s damages. However, many slip and fall cases involve complex negotiations and injury liability issues, so court preparation is necessary in case a settlement agreement can’t be reached and the case proceeds to trial.

The settlement process goes through various stages of preparation. Depending on the complexity of the case and the timeline to complete each stage, the settlement process may take several months or years to complete.

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