When someone goes to the hospital, they expect to get better – not worse. Unfortunately, many patients suffer devastating falls due to negligence. These falls often result in permanent debilitation.

If you suffered a severe injury in a hospital, our South Carolina hospital fall lawyers with the Hughey Law Firm, LLC, will fight relentlessly to get the maximum compensation you deserve.

Never hesitate to contact our Mt. Pleasant headquarters office at (843) 881-8644 for more information today. We also have a Charleston office, which you can reach at (843) 203-6689.

Schedule A Free Consultation Today!

South Carolina Hospital Fall Guide

Why Choose Our South Carolina Hospital Fall Lawyers?

If you want a South Carolina hospital fall lawyer with experience and an extensive track record of success to represent you, then you want the Hughey Law Firm, LLC.

Hughey Law Firm Team

We’ve handled hundreds of cases; our attorneys have argued cases in front of the South Carolina Court of Appeals and the South Carolina Supreme Court. Other law firms regularly turn to us to assist them in personal injury cases similar to yours. We’re ready to put our skills and experience to work for your benefit.

A Hospital’s Liability When a Patient Falls

Hospitals must ensure their patients’ safety and well-being. This duty of care includes implementing and maintaining measures to prevent patient falls. Under premises liability law, hospitals must provide a safe environment involving regular inspections, prompt repairs, and adequate staff training.

Hospitals must also adhere to federal and state regulations, including guidelines set by organizations such as the Joint Commission, which establishes standards for patient safety. Failure to meet these obligations can result in patients holding a hospital liable for any injuries sustained due to falls.

Common Causes of Hospital Falls

About one million patients suffer injuries nationwide in hospital falls yearly. These falls occur due to various factors, including the following:

Slippery Floors

Wet or recently cleaned floors are a common hazard in hospitals. Spills, leaks, and cleaning activities can create slippery surfaces, increasing the risk of patient falls. Hospitals must promptly clean all spills and post warning signs to alert patients and staff of wet floors.

Inadequate Staffing

Understaffing can lead to insufficient supervision and assistance for patients, particularly those with mobility issues. Patients may attempt to move or walk unassisted without adequate staff present, leading to falls.

Hospitals that fail to ensure appropriate nurse-to-patient ratios and adequate staff member training can face significant liability.

Poorly Maintained Equipment

Personnel must regularly inspect and maintain medical equipment, such as bed rails, wheelchairs, and walkers, to ensure proper functioning. Defective or poorly maintained equipment can fail when patients rely on them for support, resulting in falls.

Hospitals must implement regular maintenance schedules and promptly address any reported issues with equipment.

The Impact of Hospital Falls on Elderly Patients

Due to several factors, elderly patients are particularly vulnerable to hospital falls. Age-related changes in balance, muscle strength, and coordination make them more prone to losing footing.

Many elderly patients also suffer from chronic conditions such as osteoporosis, arthritis, and vision impairments, which further increase the risk of falls.

Medications commonly prescribed to older adults, including sedatives, antihypertensives, and diuretics, can cause dizziness, hypotension, and confusion, contributing to an increased fall risk.

In addition, cognitive impairments such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease can lead to poor judgment and awareness, making elderly patients more susceptible to accidents.

Long-term Effects

The consequences of falls for elderly patients can be severe and multifaceted, impacting their physical health, emotional well-being, and financial stability.

These can include terrible physical, emotional, and financial impacts.

  • Physical impacts: Falls often result in significant physical injuries, including fractures, head trauma, and soft tissue injuries. Hip fractures are prevalent and can lead to prolonged immobility, complicating recovery and increasing the risk of further complications. Recovery from such injuries can be slow and incomplete, leading to a permanent decline in mobility and independence.
  • Emotional impacts: The psychological impact of a fall can be profound. Many elderly patients experience a loss of confidence and an increased fear of falling again, leading to reduced activity levels and social isolation. This fear can result in a vicious cycle of decreased physical activity, further weakening muscles and balance and increasing the likelihood of future falls.
  • Financial impacts: The financial burden of falls can be substantial. Medical expenses from immediate treatment, surgery, and rehabilitation can be high. Long-term care needs, such as home modifications and mobility aids (and possibly moving to assisted living or nursing homes), add to the financial strain. For many elderly patients and their families, these costs can lead to significant financial hardship, impacting their quality of life and financial security.

How Our South Carolina Attorneys Can Help You Prove a Hospital Fall Incident

Proving a hospital fall incident requires meticulous evidence collection to establish the circumstances and responsibility for the fall. These are just a few examples of evidence that can substantially increase your chances of obtaining fair compensation.

Witness Statements

Witness statements from hospital staff, other patients, or visitors who observed the fall or its aftermath can corroborate your account and highlight any negligence or unsafe conditions. Our experienced South Carolina hospital fall attorneys with the Hughey Law Firm, LLC can interview witnesses effectively, ensuring their statements are comprehensive and accurately documented.

Medical Records

Medical records are essential for detailing the injuries sustained and the medical care required post-fall. These records also provide a timeline of events and help establish a direct link between the fall and your injuries. Our attorneys can help obtain all relevant medical documentation to strengthen your case.


Photographs of the scene where the fall occurred are invaluable. They can capture hazardous conditions such as wet floors, poor lighting, or obstacles contributing to the fall. Our lawyers can guide you in taking timely and detailed photos or can arrange for a professional photographer if necessary.

Organizing and Presenting the Evidence

Your lawyer will help maintain detailed records of the incident and its aftermath. These records include a personal account of the fall, noting the date, time, location, and any contributing factors. Keeping a daily journal of your post-incident physical and emotional condition can further support your claim.

We can also carefully compile all medical records, treatment plans, and doctors’ notes. This documentation is essential in demonstrating the severity and impact of your injuries.

Our experienced South Carolina hospital fall lawyers understand the legal standards and requirements for proving negligence in hospital fall cases. We can craft a compelling narrative that aligns with legal precedents and standards, increasing the likelihood of a successful claim.

We will represent you in negotiations with the hospital’s insurance company or legal team, advocating for fair compensation. We can also handle any legal complications that arise.

Why Expert Testimony is Essential in Hospital Fall Cases

Another way our South Carolina hospital fall lawyer can prove your case is through expert testimony, which is often critical in hospital fall cases. Experts provide authoritative insights that can substantiate claims and clarify complex issues for the court.

The objective, specialized knowledge that experts bring can be pivotal in proving negligence and demonstrating the extent of the injuries sustained.

Our attorneys with the Hughey Law Firm, LLC have long-standing relationships with several types of experts, including:

  • Medical professionals: Medical experts, such as doctors or specialists, can provide detailed assessments of your injuries from the fall. They can explain the medical implications, treatment plans, and long-term impact on your health.
  • Safety experts: Occupational health and safety consultants can evaluate the hospital environment. They can identify hazardous conditions that contributed to the fall and testify about industry safety standards and protocols that personnel failed to follow.
  • Hospital administration specialists: These experts can provide insights into hospital policies, procedures, and staffing levels. They can highlight systemic issues or deviations from standard operating procedures that may have led to the fall.

Selecting the Right Expert

Choosing the most credible and relevant experts is crucial for a strong case. Our South Carolina hospital fall law firm typically selects experts based on their credentials, experience, and previous courtroom testimony effectiveness.

The expert’s ability to communicate complex information clearly and persuasively to a lay audience is also a key consideration. Attorneys often rely on their professional networks, industry contacts, and expert witness directories to find the most qualified individuals.

The Process of Filing a Hospital Fall Lawsuit

Hughey Law Firm

Filing a hospital fall lawsuit involves several critical steps that require careful navigation to build a strong case and secure fair compensation. The following is a brief look at some of those steps.

The Initial Consultation

During the initial consultation with our South Carolina hospital fall law firm, you can expect to discuss the details of your fall, the injuries sustained, and the circumstances leading up to the incident.

Your attorney will ask for any available documentation, such as medical records, witness statements, and scene photographs. We will evaluate the viability of your case, identify potential legal strategies, and explain the steps involved in filing a lawsuit. You can ask questions and understand the lawyer’s experience and approach to handling similar cases.

Steps in the Legal Process

Once you’ve chosen us as your South Carolina hospital fall lawyer, this is the way your case will likely progress:

  • The investigation: Your attorney will thoroughly investigate the fall, gathering evidence such as medical records, incident reports, and expert opinions to build a strong case.
  • Filing the complaint: We will then draft and file a formal complaint with the court, outlining the case facts, the alleged negligence, and the damages sought.
  • Serving the defendant: Your attorney will notify the hospital (defendant) of the lawsuit. This is known as service of process.
  • The discovery phase: Both parties will exchange information through depositions, interrogatories, and requests for documents to uncover all relevant facts and evidence.
  • Settlement negotiations: Many cases settle out of court through negotiations. Your lawyer will advocate for a fair settlement compensating you for your injuries and losses.
  • Trial: If the defendant refuses to offer that fair settlement, the case will proceed to trial. Both sides will present their evidence and arguments, and a judge or jury will determine the outcome.

Timeline and Expectations

The timeline for a hospital fall lawsuit can vary significantly, often taking several months to a few years to resolve. Factors influencing the timeline include the case’s complexity, the amount of evidence, and court schedules.

We can help you set realistic expectations for potential outcomes. While many cases settle out of court, some may go to trial. However, with solid evidence and experienced legal representation, the chances of a favorable outcome significantly improve.

Consent and Negligence in Hospital Falls

When patients enter a hospital for treatment, the law entitles them to specific legal rights to ensure their safety and well-being. These rights include:

Informed Consent

Informed consent is a fundamental principle in healthcare that requires doctors and medical staff to fully inform patients about the risks, benefits, and alternatives of any proposed treatment or procedure. It ensures that patients can make educated decisions about their care.

Regarding patient safety, informed consent means staff should inform a patient about the risk of falls and the safety measures the hospital has in place to prevent them.

Patient Rights

Patients have the right to receive care in a safe environment, free from preventable hazards. They’re entitled to receive information about their treatment and any associated risks and provide their consent before procedures.

To protect these rights:

  • Stay informed: Ask questions about your treatment and the hospital’s safety protocols.
  • Document concerns: Keep records of any safety concerns or incidents, including who you spoke with and their actions.
  • Seek legal advice: If you believe hospital personnel violated your rights or you suffered an injury due to negligence, consult with a South Carolina hospital fall lawyer to explore your legal options.

We’re Ready to Help You Achieve Justice

Nate Hughey

If you or a loved one has suffered a fall in a hospital, you deserve justice and compensation for your injuries. While this kind of case can be challenging, you don’t have to face it alone. Our experienced South Carolina personal injury lawyers with the Hughey Law Firm, LLC, are here to explain your legal rights and build a strong case.

Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation. We’ll review the details of your case, answer your questions, and provide trusted advice on the best course of action. Don’t let negligence go unchallenged – take the first step toward securing the compensation you deserve.

Call (843) 881-8644 in Mt. Pleasant or (843) 203-6689 in Charleston to schedule your consultation and start your journey to recovery and justice.

Schedule A Free Consultation Today!

Client Testimonial

“Thank you Hughey Law Firm! It was a pleasure to work with you on my case! From the beginning, every contact I had with your firm was professional, kind, helpful, and painless! I always felt kept in the loop, and important to you as a client. If you are looking for a personal injury attorney with integrity, I would highly recommend Hughey Law Firm!”

Rating: 5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Karen C.
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Hughey Law Firm LLC, South Carolina Mt. Pleasant Office:

1311 Chuck Dawley Blvd. | Suite 201
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464
Phone: (843) 881-8644

Hughey Law Firm LLC, South Carolina Charleston Office:

171 Church St | Suite 330
Charleston, SC 29401
Phone: (843) 203-6689