You slipped and fell while visiting a Charleston property. Your medical bills have piled up, and you have considerable financial challenges that seem to continue to grow. How long should you expect it to take to settle your claim?
Talk to your attorney about the timeline you should expect in your slip and fall accident claim. Most of the time, you will not see a fast resolution to your claim. You should plan for it to take some time, based on these considerations.
What injuries did you suffer? Serious injuries may mean a long recovery period, including substantial time in the hospital. Your doctors may not even issue a prediction regarding how much you will eventually recover from your injuries until several months down the line.
Your attorney may recommend waiting until you have a clear timeline for your recovery and a good idea of what your eventual prognosis will look like before proceeding with your slip and fall accident claim, since your injuries and your medical costs have a heavy influence on the compensation you can recover.
How complex is your accident? Your attorney and the liable party’s insurance company will both want time to investigate the accident and discover what elements led to it. In a more complex accident scenario, it may take longer to investigate the accident and get a good idea of exactly what occurred.
How much do you have to negotiate? Negotiation also takes time. You may need to go through several rounds of negotiations before you and the insurance company agree to the compensation you recover. The more you must negotiate, the longer it may take to resolve your claim.
You may have many medical bills with which to contend after your Charleston slip and fall accident. Who has to pay for them? Your doctors expect payment for the services rendered after your accident, from the immediate cost of emergency care to the ongoing costs associated with rehabilitation after your accident.
As the injured party, you will need to make plans to pay those bills, whether that means utilizing your health insurance or setting up a payment plan to help you take care of those bills.
A slip and fall accident claim can make it easier for you to pay those bills. The party liable for your injuries will not pay your bills directly. Instead, you will receive compensation for the financial losses you have faced due to your injuries, including compensation for your medical costs and your lost wages.
While those funds may not cover the full amount of all your medical bills, they can provide much-needed compensation that can make it easier for you to pay those bills.
Always have a lawyer look at any settlement offer related to your injuries before you take any further action with it. A settlement offer may look great on the surface. You may even think that accepting the offer quickly will help get the funds you need in your hands faster, which could seem vital in the immediate aftermath of a severe accident.
The insurance company, however, may not have your best interests at heart as it issues that settlement. In many cases, insurance companies may actually try to minimize the compensation they have to pay out following an accident, including a Charleston slip and fall.
Minimizing the payout starts with that initial settlement offer. Many insurance companies will send out a low-ball offer: one that fails to take the compensation you really deserve for those injuries into consideration.
Without a clear idea of how much compensation you should really expect for your injuries, you might accept that offer before you have a chance to consider it further. If you accept the offer, it may limit the compensation you can eventually recover and leave you without the compensation you really need for your injuries.
A lawyer can help review that settlement offer, calculate the compensation you really deserve, and give you a better idea of whether you should continue to negotiate or accept the offer.
A lawyer can also offer a lot of other advantages to your claim.
A lawyer will investigate all the elements of your claim. Did the insurance company try to claim that you caused the accident through unsafe behavior or entering an area you should not have entered? Did the insurance company pressure you to admit that your actions may have contributed to the accident?
An attorney can investigate your claim and give you a better idea of who may have caused or contributed to your accident, which can help prove your innocence and limit the liability you may face for your slip and fall accident injuries.
Furthermore, a thorough investigation may actually uncover another party who shares liability for the accident, which may increase the compensation you can recover.
A lawyer will negotiate for you. Dealing with the insurance company does not leave many people happy with the experience. In fact, the insurance company may put pressure on you, try to trip you up, or just in general cause unnecessary stress that you certainly do not need while recovering from your injuries.
An attorney can take over those interactions for you, which means you will not have to worry about that pressure or about inadvertently limiting the compensation you can recover.
You suffered injuries in a Charleston slip and fall accident. What next? The steps you take in the immediate aftermath of a slip and fall accident can go a long way toward providing both physical and financial protection following your injury.
Report your injury to the premises owner. If you suffered injuries at a business, the business may have a specific procedure it needs to go through to create a record of the accident. The record will serve as evidence of when the accident took place, which can later make it easy for you to pursue compensation through a personal injury claim.
Create your own record of the accident. As soon as possible after your accident, take the time to sit down and create a record of the accident. You may want to take photos of the accident scene, including any clear signs of what led to your fall. If, for example, you suffered injuries when the stairs down to the beach collapsed beneath you, you might want to snap photos of the stairs. Ask for contact information from any witnesses to the accident.
As soon as you can, write down or record your account of what happened. Your memory may prove clearer in the immediate aftermath of the accident, which can make it easier for you to create an accurate view of exactly what led to your accident and your injuries.
Seek medical attention. Charleston offers several opportunities to seek medical attention, including MEDcare Urgent Care, Health First Urgent Care, and Access Urgent as well as Roper Hospital, MUSC Health University Medical Center, and a Children’s Hospital, where children can receive treatment for serious injuries. If you feel any pain or see any sign of injury after a fall, or if you have underlying health conditions that could make a fall more dangerous to you, always seek medical attention immediately.
Your doctor may uncover injuries that you did not even recognize in the immediate aftermath of the accident, including injuries like broken bones or even traumatic brain injury. Failure to seek treatment for those injuries could worsen your symptoms and leave you with more severe long-term impacts than you initially anticipated.
Contact an attorney. Do not try to handle a Charleston slip and fall accident claim on your own. Instead, get in touch with an experienced Charleston premises liability attorney. An attorney can help you decide on your next steps, give you vital advice, and make it easier for you to recover the compensation you deserve.
You visited a friend’s property, only to discover that your friend did not take care of necessary maintenance on the stairs. The stairs broke, sending you tumbling and resulting in a herniated disc in your back, broken bones, or even traumatic brain injury.
Do you have the right to seek compensation for those injuries?
You might know that if you suffered serious injuries while visiting a publicly accessible location, you have the right to file a personal injury claim. Most businesses carry insurance that will protect visitors who may sustain serious injuries as a result of the negligence of a property owner.
Private homeowners do not carry the same type of insurance as business owners. They do, however, frequently carry homeowner’s insurance, which can help provide a vital layer of protection to anyone who suffers serious injuries on that property.
Sometimes, if you suffer injuries on a friend’s property, that friend may try to convince you not to report the accident or file a personal injury claim. While a claim may make your friend’s homeowner’s insurance policy increase in cost in the future, that claim can also provide you with vitally-needed compensation that can help you recover from your slip and fall accident injuries and cover the financial losses you faced due to your injuries. Contact an attorney to learn more about how you should proceed with your claim.
Charleston’s many attractions draw families from all over. Each year, it sees more than seven-million visitors who come to check out the beaches, parks, and amazing arts and culture in the area.
That wide range of facilities, however, must properly maintain their properties to reduce accident risk and keep visitors to those properties as safe as possible.
Accidents can occur anywhere, but when businesses fail to properly maintain their facilities, it can raise the risk of accidents that may include serious slip and fall injuries.
- Hotels. Whether you plan to spend time hanging out by the pool or you want to take a walk down to a local beach using the walkways provided by the hotel, you expect to have a safe experience in your hotel room. Improper maintenance, from damaged walkways to slick flooring in the pool area, can substantially increase your risk of suffering injuries in a slip and fall accident.
- Local Attractions. Charleston has museums, gardens, theaters, farmers markets, and even aquariums: an incredible range of activities that act as a steady draw for residents and visitors alike. While those attractions may make for a great day, if they fail to properly maintain their buildings and the areas in front of them, they can pose a slip and fall hazard to visitors in the area.
- Businesses. Your visit to Charleston might include shopping at a range of local stores. As a visitor or resident, you rely on those stores to provide you with a safe experience, including cleaning up wet flooring before it poses a serious fall hazard. Unfortunately, Charleston businesses do not always take the steps they must take to provide a safe experience.