Frequently Asked Questions About Massachusetts Slip And Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents can happen in a variety of ways. They can also happen anywhere. They can arise from slipping and falling on a liquid at a supermarket. They can also happen on snow and ice in a parking lot. Or, they can be caused by a leak at an apartment building that a landlord should have fixed, but never did. There are endless ways in which these accidents can happen. Knowing what to do if you experienced one of these accidents is very important. If you slipped and fell you may have questions about comes next. Here are some answers to some commonly asked questions about these accidents:
Do I Have A Case?
Some people think that if they have fallen on someone’s property and sustained injury, that they then automatically have a case. That is not true. The reason is that in order for there to be a case, liability must be proven. It is the legal burden of the injury victim to establish the one in charge of keeping the property safe where you fell was negligent. How is that done? It must be shown that the property owners (or whoever is responsible for keeping the property safe) failed to reasonably maintain the property, and that that failure led to your injuries. Keep in mind that these slip and fall cases are more difficult to win than other personal injury claims in Massachusetts.
Who Is Responsible?
It depends on the case. For example, if you rent property and fall, potentially responsible parties are the landlord, property manager, and any third-parties that negligently did work to the property which led to your fall. Or, if you slip and fall on snow and ice in a parking lot, the potentially responsible parties are the owner of the parking lot or any snow removal contractors.
With all slip and fall lawsuits in Massachusetts, all potential parties that may be held liable should be brought into the case. Frequently, there is contractual language which governs the parties’ responsibilities to maintain the property. That language dictates who is responsible for paying any claims for personal injury compensation that are filed.
How Much Is My Case Worth?
It really depends on the case. Assuming there is liability, then we look to the injuries. If there injuries are less serious, with very little in the way of medical bills, a settlement would likely be small. However, for more serious injuries, including broken bones, and the need for surgery, the settlement would be much larger. Also, if there are any unpaid medical bills or lost wages, those factors too would increase the value of the case.
Are There Time Limits?
Massachusetts slip and fall claims are governed by three-year statute of limitations. That means if three years go by and no lawsuit is filed, the case will be over. Even though you have three years, it is never a good idea to wait to bring one of these claims. Delays never hurt these cases, they only hurt them. For example, important witnesses that saw the fall may disappear, or photos and videos of the accident can be lost.
Keep in mind slip and falls against the City of Boston have very strict notice limits of 30 days, and claims against the MBTA require written presentment notice to be sent to them within two years of the accident. These, like statutes of limitations, are extremely important deadlines which do not have any exceptions.
Massachusetts Slip And Fall Accidents
The Law Office of Christopher Earley has for 15 years been successfully representing people injured in slip and fall accidents. No matter how you fell, or the cause of the fall, if you were injured, you may have a case to pursue.