Unmarked Steps and Elevation Changes
Many properties have more than one level, and therefore they need a way for people to move from one elevation to the next. Usually, stairs, ramps, and other elevation changes are marked, but when they are not, people walking through a property can be caught off guard and may trip and fall. If you were hurt in a fall caused by unmarked steps or elevation changes, you might be owed damages, and it is in your best interest to speak to an attorney as soon as possible. At The Grife Law Firm, our Boca Raton slip and fall lawyers possess the skills and resources needed to help people hurt due to unmarked steps and elevation changes in the pursuit of damages, and we can develop persuasive arguments in favor of your recovery of compensation. We regularly represent people injured in accidents in lawsuits throughout South Florida.Harm Caused by Unmarked Steps and Elevation Changes
Trip and fall accidents that occur on unmarked steps and elevation changes can lead to grave injuries. For example, people who are unaware of stairs and fall down them may suffer nerve damage, fractures, traumatic brain injuries, and spinal cord injuries. Similarly, people who trip and fall due to an elevation change can suffer facial contusions, lacerations, broken bones, and torn ligaments and tendons. People hurt in trip and fall accidents often incur substantial medical bills and may be either temporarily or permanently unable to work.Liability for Harm Caused by Unmarked Steps and Elevation Changes
If a person visiting a business or other property falls on unmarked stairs or elevation changes, the business owner may be liable for the harm that the person suffers. Usually, a person injured in an accident on another party’s property will assert a negligence claim against the property owner in a premises liability lawsuit. To recover damages in a negligence claim, a plaintiff must prove that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care and that the defendant’s omissions or acts constituted a departure from the duty.
In premises liability cases, the plaintiff will usually argue that the defendant had an obligation to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition, to remove foreseeable risks of harm, and to warn people of known hazards that they are unlikely to notice prior to suffering injuries. Typically, a property owner will place a sign or yellow paint at the top of a stair or ramp, warning people to watch their step due to the elevation change. Thus, if a property owner fails to notify people entering the property of stairs or elevation changes, this may constitute a breach of the duty owed. After establishing a duty and a violation, the plaintiff must prove that the breach proximately caused the harm suffered. In other words, the injury-inducing accident would not have happened if the defendant had complied with its duties.Damages Awarded in Accident Cases
Florida Statute 768.81 defines the damages recoverable in a negligence action. Specifically, it states that a plaintiff may recover economic damages, which include lost past and future income, medical expenses, lost support and services, and any other financial losses that would not have occurred without the injury caused by the defendant’s behavior. Statute 768.81 refers to non-economic damages as well, but they are not explicitly defined within that provision. Other Florida statutes state that non-economic damages mean the non-financial harm caused by the plaintiff’s injury. Typically, this includes suffering, pain, physical impairment, mental anguish, and inconvenience.Speak to a Capable Boca Raton Attorney
Many properties throughout Florida contain hidden dangers, like unmarked steps and elevation changes, and unfortunately, people regularly suffer injuries due to these defects. If you tripped and fell on someone else’s property, you could be owed compensation, and it is prudent to speak to an attorney. The capable slip and fall lawyers at The Grife Law Firm are adept at proving that careless property owners should be held accountable for harm suffered on their premises, and if you engage our services, we will work diligently to help you seek a favorable outcome. We regularly represent people in premises liability lawsuits in Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, and West Palm Beach. You can reach us at 855-998-0770 or through our form online to set up a meeting.