Every year, an estimated 8 million people in the United States go to the emergency room for treatment after a fall accident. Of those injured, more than one million are treated for slip and fall accidents. Many accidents occur at workplaces, including construction sites, office buildings, restaurants, retail stores, government buildings, and outdoor areas, such as sidewalks and parking lots.
Unfortunately, many slip and fall accidents result in serious injury. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 23% of fatal workplace accidents in New York City are caused by falls, slips, and trips. The knowledgeable personal injury lawyers at the Terry Katz & Associates Law Firm have been helping NYC accident victims since 1992. We are fully-versed in New York State workers’ compensation and personal injury laws. If you were hurt at work, call our toll-free number at 888-488-7459 to receive a free consultation for your injury claim.
Things You Must Do After a Slip & Fall
If you experience a slip and fall accident at work, there are several important steps you should take ASAP. Any delays could negatively impact an injury claim and hinder your ability to prove your personal injury claim.
Seek Medical Treatment Immediately
After a slip and fall accident, it’s essential to seek medical attention and have your accident documented by a medical professional. You may be in pain immediately, but even if you aren't, certain types of injury, such as brain injuries, might not be apparent for days or weeks. Inform your doctor your injury stems from a work accident. You want everything documented. Most businesses and insurance companies attempt to have injury claims dismissed or will try to diminish the extent of your injuries. Documentation of medical care can negate these efforts; be sure to keep organized copies of your medical records.
Report the Slip and Fall Accident to your Employer
After your injury, as soon as you are reasonably able, inform your employer about the accident.
Identify the reason why you fell.
When telling your story, stick to the facts.
Never accept blame for the fall.
Try to limit communication (anything you say can be turned against you).
Don't agree to any recorded statements without your attorney present.
Once your accident report is filed with your employer, obtain a copy to keep for your own records.
It’s important you file an accident report quickly to ensure no one can deny it happened or say you didn’t take your personal injury seriously.
If possible, identify any witnesses who saw you fall and get their names, addresses, and phone numbers. Even if witnesses didn’t actually see you slip, they might be aware of the condition that led to your injury.
Follow all Doctor’s Recommendations
If you file for workers’ compensation, you’ll need to prove your injuries. By missing appointments or failing to follow on physical therapy, chiropractic, or other therapies as prescribed, you might put your fall injury into question.
Document the Accident Scene
Take as many photographs as possible of the accident scene from different angles as soon as possible (or if you’re too injured, ask someone you trust to do this for you). Businesses will often quickly rectify issues and, once evidence disappears, it adds a layer of difficulty when trying to prove your case. Additionally, take photos of your own injuries and make notes of any weather conditions or other circumstances present at the time of your injury.
Determine How Long the Hazard Existed
To prove liability in a work-related accident, you’ll need to show the employer didn’t correct the dangerous condition that led to your fall. For instance, does a broken drainpipe routinely leak and that freezes over the sidewalk after every winter storm? Or did something spill and was left to dry on its own? Proving negligence means it must be demonstrated the hazard was left beyond a reasonable amount of time.
Call a Personal Injury Attorney
Once your medical needs are addressed, be sure to call a knowledgeable NYS personal injury attorney. Insurance companies and the companies they represent are not concerned with your injury or any losses you suffer because of it; they’ll be actively representing the business’ interests. You need someone on your side who will ensure you get the compensation you deserve to help pay for your medical bills, lost wages, medical treatment, or other financial losses.
Be Mindful of Social Media Posts
Many people have legitimate personal injury cases but then post photos on social media showing leisure activities or other events. Be very careful what you post online because your content can be misconstrued and severely undermine a fall injury claim.
Remember, to always speak to an attorney ASAP and don't sign any documents an insurance company presents to you. This may seriously harm your injury case.
How Long Do I Have to File a Slip and Fall Claim?
In workers’ compensation cases, New York State places a three-year limit on how long an injury victim can file. The clock starts running on the date your accident occurred, however, there are some rare exceptions that allow for extensions. Take to a knowledgeable NYS fall attorney to see if an extension may apply in your situation.
Can I Receive Workers' Compensation for a Slip and Fall Accident at Work?
Because New York State is a “no-fault” insurance state, you cannot sue your employer in NYS for a work-related injury, you must file for workers’ compensation. However, an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help determine if it was the employer or a third party at fault. If it appears a third party was responsible for the conditions that led to the fall, you can explore a premises liability personal injury case to help cover your expenses.
A work injury can significantly disrupt your life. If you slip and fall at work, it’s essential to take the necessary steps to help you recover both physically and financially. This will increase the chances you’ll be able to successfully file a workers’ compensation case for your fall. Statistically speaking, roughly one-fourth of employers will initially deny a claim. If this happens, you do have the right to file an appeal with the New York Workers’ Compensation Board.
Call Our NYC Slip and Fall Accident Lawyers for a Free Consultation
If you, or a family member, were injured after a slip and fall on public or private property or fell at work, call the experienced slip and fall accident lawyers at Terry Katz & Associates for a no-obligation, free consultation. Since 1992, our attorneys have been working hard to ensure injured people in New York receive the justice and compensation they deserve.
Our legal team understands the difficulties you face while trying to recover after a painful slip and fall accident. Call our law firm today at 888-488-7459 to schedule a case review evaluation or seek legal advice about personal injury claims.
Terry Katz, Esq.
Terry Katz, Esq., the founding Member of the firm, handles all aspects of Workers’ Compensation and Social Security Disability cases.