Slip and fall injuries make up the majority of the most commonly reported personal injury cases in the United States. The owners of establishments that are open to the public are usually held liable whenever such accidents occur on their premises. But what happens if the accident occurs in a private home? Who is held liable? Can the victims get compensated?
Permitted Visitors vs. Intruders
If you are injured while intruding in someone else’s private residence without permission, then the owner of the premise does not owe you anything and will not be held liable for any slip and fall injuries that you suffer while there. When the homeowner intentionally created conditions meant to harm people within his or her residence, the law makes an exception to this rule if small children are involved.
If you are visiting a private residence with permission when the accident occurs, then the situation is quite different. In this case, the liability for the accident will depend on whether or not the homeowner was negligent. The law assumes that the homeowner is negligent if he or she fails to warn you about any dangers on the property which the owner had reason to know about. For instance, if the residence has slippery floors and the owner fails to warn you about that before you slip and fall on the floor, then he or she might be held liable for the accident. However not all slip and fall accidents that occur in private homes are caused by negligence. For example, anyone can slip and fall on perfectly sound stairs, and then only they are to blame for the accident.
Compensation for Slip and Fall Accidents in Private Residences
While the law allows you to seek compensation from the relevant homeowner’s insurance provider in the event of an accident caused by negligence in a private home, getting that compensation is not always easy. The first problem is the law itself. The guidelines and laws relating to personal injuries in private homes are not very clear. For instance, if you cannot prove that you were at the residence by invitation from its owner, then the homeowner’s insurers can simply argue that you were an intruder.
The second problem is a little more personal. The fact that you were invited into a private home means that the homeowner is someone who had friendly intentions towards you–probably a neighbor, friend,or relative of yours. Suing such a person for compensation after an injury may therefore seem like an abuse of hospitality or a sign of ingratitude. In fact, this is why experts believe that a significant number of slip and fall accidents that occur in private homes often go unreported.
The best way of both dealing with problems and getting the compensation you deserve is to consult a competent, qualified, and experienced personal injury attorney to help you seek that compensation.
Contacting an experienced Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer
Slip and fall accidents at a private home are tricky cases that require the assistance of an attorney well versed in premises liability cases. If you have been hurt by falling in a grocery store, shopping mall, department store, parking lot, restaurant, or other public location in Florida, contact our office today and speak with an experienced slip-and-fall lawyer. We offer free initial consultations to anyone who has a potential case. While our offices are located in Miami, we take cases on a contingency basis from Key West to Jacksonville. Call us today at 1-866-597-4529 or 305-441-0440, or reach us by email at [email protected] or SKYPE. We are ready to help you receive compensation for time lost from work, medical expense reimbursement, pain and suffering, inconvenience, and other damages.