How Much Can You Recover For A Slip And Fall Accident?
Slip and fall accidents are some of the most common causes of injury in the United States. Whether you are injured on the job or on vacation at a luxury resort, you may be entitled to financial compensation via a personal injury claim.
Although it may not sound as traumatic as a car accident, a slip and fall injury can still cause severe harm to your livelihood and your income. According to the Centers for Disease Control, in 2018, nearly 250,000 workers missed work due to a slip and fall.
In addition to losing wages because you’re unable to work, medical treatment and costs associated with being injured in a slip can pile up quickly.
Michigan state law primarily determines the amount of compensation accident victims can expect to receive due to a slip and fall, and it depends on the specifics of your case.
In Michigan, most employers with more than three employees must have workers’ compensation insurance. If you are injured on the job, you must first file a workers’ compensation claim with your employer’s insurance company.
Most workplace slip and fall cases are resolved this way, but workers’ compensation isn’t always your only recourse. Although you cannot claim compensation for pain and suffering through workers’ comp in Michigan, you can with a personal injury claim.
Particularly if your injury results from employer negligence, you should speak with a lawyer specializing in workers’ compensation laws. They can evaluate your case and determine if you are entitled to reimbursement above what your workers’ compensation benefits provide.
Slips and Falls in Public Spaces
It’s not only reasonable to expect property owners to maintain their property’s safety. In Michigan, it’s the law. Property and business owners have premises liability, meaning they are required to keep their spaces reasonably maintained to ensure all visitors’ safety.
If you suffer a slip or fall at a restaurant or hotel, for example, the owner may be liable for your injuries and associated costs. You’ll need to show that the property owner was aware of a potential hazard and did nothing to remedy it to use negligence as the basis for your personal injury claim.
Determining Factors for Compensation
Once you have determined that you have a personal injury case, the amount of money you’ll be able to recoup is based largely on your loss of income, medical bills, property damage, and pain and suffering.
You’ll need to provide evidence of injury and fault to receive full compensation.
Evidence of Injury
The more evidence you have in a slip and fall case, the better. You should document the extent of your injury, the cause of the slip or fall, damages that you’ve incurred as a result of your injury, and evidence that the person or persons you’re suing are responsible.
Medical evidence is particularly crucial in demonstrating your financial and physical damages.
Economic vs. Non-Economic Damages
When filing a personal injury complaint, you can ask for economic damages, non-economic damages, or both.
Economic damages include lost wages, medical bills, and rehabilitation costs, whereas non-economic damages compensate for pain and suffering.
Under Michigan law, there are different rules for awarding economic and non-economic damages.
Modified Comparative Negligence
Michigan uses a rule called “modified comparative negligence” to award both economic and non-economic damages in personal injury cases. That means, if you are found by the court to be less than 50% at fault for an accident resulting in your injury, you can pursue economic and non-economic damages. Financial compensation is then determined based on the percentage of your responsibility.
For example, if you slipped and fell on a wet floor in a hotel lobby while walking and texting at the same time, the property owner may argue that your carelessness contributed to the injury.
The court will determine a percentage of fault for you and the property owner when deciding on compensation. If you were seeking $100,000 in economic damages and the court determines you were 30% at fault, you would only receive $70,000 ($100,000 – 30%.)
In the above scenario, you could also pursue non-economic damages that would be awarded on the same percentage model. However, in Michigan, if the court finds you to be more than 50% at fault for an accident resulting in injury, you can only sue for economic damages and not pain and suffering.
Therefore, who the court finds at fault and to what degree determines the amount of money you can receive with a slip and fall injury claim.
Speak with a Professional Today
The intricacies of personal injury law can be complicated and overwhelming. If you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident, you should speak with a qualified legal professional.
The experienced staff of personal injury attorneys at Cochran, Kroll, & Associates, P.C., can provide you with a free case assessment and walk you through the process of pursuing a personal injury claim with confidence.
The law firm of Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C., stands ready to evaluate your circumstances and provide you with experienced representation specific to the state of Michigan’s personal injury laws. We are determined to fight for the compensation to which you’re entitled.
Call us today at (866) 642-4529 for your free consultation.