When we consider slip, trip, or fall incidents, we may envision someone slipping on a wet floor inside a grocery store or a spill at a restaurant. Few of us consider sidewalks, yet, as these types of falls are one of the most common trip injuries that our West Palm Beach negligent security lawyer sees.
Most of us use sidewalks nearly every day whether it's for commuting, exercise, or just walking from one point to another. Surprisingly though, sidewalks are one of the most common and neglected sites of serious trip and fall injuries across Florida due to an influx in cracked, defective, or broken infrastructure.
In the unfortunate event that you have fallen and were injured on a defective sidewalk outside a public space or private property in West Palm Beach, one of the first phone calls you should make is to The Law Offices of Matthew Konecky at (561) 671-5995. Insurance companies will not want to pay on your claim and will try to get you to settle for the least amount of money possible. The cost of your injuries could be high; you could experience lost income and high medical bills. Our office will gather all the evidence necessary to prove your case.
Common Sidewalk Injures
With most sidewalks in Florida being made of divided concrete, the risk of tripping over a defective sidewalk is much higher than anywhere else. A multitude of serious injures can occur from a Florida sidewalk fall including:
- Broken facial bones (jaw, nose, orbital bone)
- Broken or fractured wrists, elbows, shoulders
- Broken collarbone
- Skull fractures
Sidewalk fall injuries are serious, and should not be taken lightly as they can lead to long-term or even lifelong disabilities, not to mention extensive medical bills for treatments and therapies. If the fall occurred due to negligence, you may be entitled to extensive compensation.
After a sidewalk trip and fall injury, a lawyer can help establish the exact cause of your sidewalk injury. In South Florida especially, palm trees tend to lift and destroy sidewalks depending on their size and proximity to the walkway. With the help of a West Palm Beach sidewalk trip and fall lawyer, you can establish the cause of your sidewalk injuries which may include:
- Uneven pavement
- Loose bricks
- Construction flaws
Who is Responsible for Sidewalk Injuries?
Sidewalk liability differs depending on where the trip and fall incident occurred. Ultimately, the person who owns the property has a duty to maintain it in a reasonably safe condition for lawful visitors. If a sidewalk trip and fall occurs outside a store in a strip mall, it is likely the strip mall owner, not the store owner, who is directly responsible for its maintenance.
Many cities in Florida have ordinances that impart full or even partial responsibility to homeowners. A West Palm Beach sidewalk trip and fall lawyer can help determine who may be responsible whether it be:
- Individual homeowners
- Local and state government agencies
- Homeowners associations
- Condo associations
Because of Florida limited liability laws, a general rule that you must show to a municipality is an "actual or constructive" notice of the dangerous condition before liability can be established. This can be done in the form of a written complaint expressing concern for the hazard. If the municipality fails to correct the failing infrastructure, they are completely liable for any injuries that occur on the premises. To have a successful sidewalk trip and fall injury case, you must prove:
- The party was aware of the condition and made no effort to fix it
- The sidewalk was a danger
- The sidewalk was the direct cause of an injury
- Proof that you suffered real and verifiable injures (the first thing you should do after tripping and falling over a sidewalk in Palm Beach County or Broward County is to see a doctor.)
Lawyer for Sidewalk Trip and Fall Injuries in West Palm Beach
If you are aware that a cracked, defective, or broken sidewalk directly caused your fall resulting in severe injuries, contact us or call us immediately at (561) 671-5995 to learn about your legal rights relating to negligent security in South Florida. If you are not quite ready to call us, download our free, no-obligation, personal injury guide 'What the Heck Is My Personal Injury Case Worth?' in the meantime.