What should I do after a slip and fall to ensure that I have a good personal injury claim?

If you’ve experience injuries due to a slip and fall accident, there are steps you should take to document the incident and to ensure you have a strong personal injury claim. Some of the steps involved in documenting your claim must occur at the time of the accident, while others can be follow-up actions. Completing all of these steps outlined here may not be possible, dependent upon your specific circumstances; however, completing as many of them as possible helps strengthen your claim.

Third Party Claim/Lawsuit

A third party claim or lawsuit is a claim filed by the defendant against another party. Such a claim may be filed during an active personal injury lawsuit or following the conclusion of a claim in which the defendant is found liable for the damages in the case.

In a standard personal injury lawsuit, a plaintiff names a defendant or defendants as responsible for injuries suffered. The plaintiff attempts to prove the defendant is liable or responsible for his or her injuries. If successful, the defendant may be required to pay damages to the defendant for the injuries suffered.

Willful Negligence

In cases in which willful negligence is argued, the plaintiff attempts to show that the defendant consciously chose to disregard the safety or security of others. In other words, the defendant disregarded risks of which he or she was aware.

Presumptively Capable of Negligence

Presumptively Capable of Negligence

Personal injury claims that name legal minors (children under the age of 18) as defendants require that the minor is “presumptively capable of negligence”. In other words, in order to win a personal injury claim in which damages were the result of a child’s negligent actions, the plaintiff must be able to prove that the child has:

  • the capacity to take responsibility for his or her actions


HMO Negligence

HMO negligence is a civil lawsuit that falls under the broader category of medical malpractice. In this type of claim, a health maintenance organization (HMO), under which a patient has health insurance coverage, is named as a defendant in a medical malpractice personal injury case.

In HMO negligence cases, the HMO may be the sole defendant, but is more commonly named as a co-defendant along with a physician or other healthcare provider, facility, or entity.

Settlement Demand

A “settlement demand” is a group of documents sent to an insurance company or claims adjuster in an effort to avoid court proceedings as part of a personal injury claim. The documents are intended to prove exactly what damages have occurred and provide the justification needed for paying a compensation settlement for the economic and non-economic damages in a personal injury claim.

The settlement demand may contain a number of different documents including:

Premises Liability

The legal concept of “premises liability” asserts that the owner or the occupier of a property is the one legally responsible for any injuries or accidents, which may occur on the property.

The most common personal injury claims that draw on the concept of premises liability are slip and fall lawsuits, but any civil suit for personal injuries may potentially call this rule into question.

Collateral Source Rule

Collateral Source Rule

The collateral source rule, or the doctrine of collateral source, is a rule that prevents defendants from entering information into evidence that shows the claimant has received compensation from another source for the same damages that are being considered in the lawsuit in which defendants are named.

Preponderance of Evidence

Preponderance of evidence is one of two primary “standards of proof” which must be met by a claimant or plaintiff in a civil lawsuit like a personal injury claim in order to win the argument and receive any damages for injuries suffered.

In a personal injury lawsuit, the plaintiff is responsible for proving the injuries he or she suffered are in fact the responsibility of the defendant or that the defendant’s negligence is what led to the injuries.