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How do property owners defend against slip-and-fall claims?

Slipping, tripping and falling can be upsetting, especially when it happens in the middle of a store or other public place. In many cases, the only damage done is a bruised ego or the pang of embarrassment. However, in other cases, these accidents can result in painful, serious injuries that require medical treatment.

If you are involved in the latter of these situations, you may want to consider your options for filing a legal claim to recover damages. Compensation can help you cover your medical bills, lost wages and other expenses resulting from your injuries. Be aware, though, that the party named in a lawsuit will often defend themselves in an effort to avoid liability.

Below are some of the common defenses property owners often use to avoid financial responsibility for slip-and-fall accidents on their premises. 

  1. They weren't negligent; you were clumsy: Property owners might blame you for your accident by saying there was nothing they could have done to prevent it. Or, they might argue that a condition was so obviously unsafe that a reasonable person should have known to avoid it.
  2. They didn't know about the dangerous conditions that caused your accident: In order for a property owner to be considered negligent, you prove that he or she knew about a dangerous condition -- or should have known about a dangerous condition -- and failed to address it adequately.
  3. Your injuries are not the result of your accident: For an injured party to collect compensation, it must be established that the accident caused damages. However, people often believe slip-and-fall accident victims exaggerate their conditions or fabricate injuries. 

These defenses may or may not hold water, so it is crucial to anticipate them and prepare your case accordingly. Though, this can be difficult when you are already dealing with painful injuries.

To protect yourself, your well-being and your legal rights, it can be important that you consider working with an attorney to pursue a premises liability lawsuit. With the help of an attorney, you can stay focused on your recovery and leave the legal work to someone familiar with the system and capable of building a case to overcome the challenges from negligent parties.

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