Slip and Fall Lawyers Serving, Baltimore, Annapolis & Washington, D.C.
If you have slipped and fallen on the property of another and sustained injuries, then you may have a viable slip and fall against the owner or operator of the property and be entitled to monetary compensation. In Maryland and the District of Columbia, the law generally provides that the responsibility of those who own or possess property to people injured on their property depends upon the standard of care owed to the injured person. The standard of care depends upon the injured person's legal status on the property. While the law can vary somewhat between the District of Columbia and Maryland, an individual on the property of another typically falls within any of the four statuses below:
- Invitee. An invitee is a person who is invited or permitted to be on another's property for purposes related to the owner's or occupier's business,
- Social Guest or Licensee by Invitation. A social guest or licensee by invitation is a person who is permitted on the property of another for no business purpose of the owner or invitee but as the express or implied guest of the owner or occupier of the property,
- Bare Licensee. A bare licensee is a person who is on the property with the consent but not at the invitation of the owner or occupier, and who is there to serve his or her own interests but not to serve any interest of the owner or occupier,
- Trespasser. A trespasser is a person who is on the property of another without the consent of the owner or occupier of the property.
The duty owed to an invitee is to use reasonable care to see that those portions of the property that the invitee may be expected to use are safe. Typically, you see an invitee in the context of a customer visiting a business owner’s property. For example, if you slipped on a wet floor at a grocery store while doing your weekly shopping, then you would likely fall in the invitee category. The duty owed to a social guest or licensee by invitation is to exercise reasonable care to make the premises safe or to warn the guest of known dangerous conditions that cannot reasonably be discovered by the guest. The only duty owed to a bare licensee or trespasser is to refrain from willful injury or entrapment. A bare licensee or trespasser takes the property as it exists. If all of this seems confusing to you, you are not alone. A lawyer at Henderson Law can advise you as to your likely status on one’s property and the duty that you were owed by the property owner and/or operator.
How long do I have to report a slip and fall?
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, then you should immediately notify the owner and/or operator of the property of your fall. By doing so, you will minimize the risk that the owner and/or operator denies your presence on their property and/or that you sustained an injury thereon. You will also strengthen your claim by immediately notifying the negligent party as the negligent party will have a lesser opportunity to argue that it did not know of your claim so that it did not preserve crucial evidence. If you retain Henderson Law, one of its slip and fall lawyers can send out an immediate letter to the negligent party requesting that it preserve crucial evidence relevant to your slip and fall claim.
Should I hire a lawyer for a slip and fall injury?
Yes. While Henderson Law is not aware of any empirical data as to the difference in value between a monetary recovery by an unrepresented person and one represented by a lawyer, we do recognize that an insurance company and its insured are likely to take a represented party more seriously than one that is not represented by a lawyer. So, in order to ensure that you receive the compensation that you are entitled to, Henderson Law recommends that you retain a lawyer as soon as possible after a slip and fall accident in order to ensure that the negligent party is timely and properly put on notice of your claim and crucial evidence is preserved.
How long do I have to go to the doctor after a slip and fall?
If you have been injured, then you should immediately seek medical treatment. It is a common defense tactic to try and minimize an injured person’s claim by questioning the legitimacy of their injuries by highlighting a delay in their receipt of medical treatment. An individual injured in a slip and fall accident should also make sure that they closely follow the recommendations of their health care providers. If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident and directed to undergo a certain course of treatment by your medical providers, then it is imperative that you keep your appointments and follow the course of treatment that has been recommended to you. If you do not, then a defense lawyer will undoubtedly argue that you were not injured at all or, at least, to the extent that you claim.
Wes P. Henderson has been in the unique position of both defending slip and fall cases and representing the victim of slip and fall accidents. Henderson Law is accepting new cases for clients injured in the District of Columbia and Maryland. Henderson Law is willing to take new clients across the State of Maryland, including, but not limited to, new cases arising in the following cities: Annapolis, Crofton, Bowie, Upper Marlboro, Crownsville, Davidsonville, Edgewater, Millersville, Odenton, Severna Park, and Pasadena. If you have been injured in a fall on the premises of another individual or entity, please call Henderson Law for an initial consultation.