If you’ve been hurt because someone did not take care of their property, you are probably wondering whether it makes sense to talk to a personal injury lawyer in Burlington. We often hear from people who aren’t sure whether they have the right to make a legal claim and, if so, what’s involved.
Not long ago, we got a call from some folks in New York. Their elderly mom, who lives here locally, was hurt as she and their dad were walking out of a hardware store.
The property owner knew that the gutters leaked at the edge of the parking lot, but they never fixed it.
When winter came, puddles formed underneath just steps from the front door and they froze solid. Mom went down hard, breaking her hip.
The insurance company was giving them the run-around; no-one would take responsibility for the cost of the medical care and the wheelchair and other modifications that needed to take place around the house. Could we help?
We did. And while we couldn’t undo mom’s injuries, we settled for enough money to build a new accessible bathroom and make other changes to the house which made life easier for her, along with compensation for the human losses resulting from the injury – the pain, discomfort and grief associated with loss of mobility at an advanced age.
This is one example of how an experienced premises liability lawyer in Burlington can make a difference in your life. Reach out to Drew Palcsik at Champlain Valley Law to discuss your rights and legal options.
Proving Negligence in a Slip and Fall Case
In a slip and fall case, you must be able to demonstrate that the defendant was both negligent and that their negligence was a substantial factor in causing your injuries. Often, plaintiffs in these cases are customers shopping or transacting business at a property where they are injured, whether this is a hotel, an amusement park, a bank, or the aisle of a grocery store.
Businesses are not automatically responsible for all customer injures on their premises. However, a business does have a duty of care to ensure that its property or facilities are suitable and safe for visitors. A business owner may be held liable if our legal team can prove they knew or should have known of the threat of a dangerous condition and that the defendant did not exercise reasonable care in preventing the danger or allowing it to persist. We must also prove that you were injured, and that the injury was, in fact, substantially caused by the unsafe condition.
The element of causation centers on whether the defendant’s negligence was a substantial factor in creating the injury. It often becomes an issue when defense lawyers claim that you were already hurt, or someone else is responsible for your injuries.
Time Limit for Bringing a Claim in Burlington
There are time limits for bringing personal injury lawsuits. This is called the statute of limitations. For a Burlington slip and fall lawsuit, 12 Vermont Statutes Annotated § 512 states that a case for physical injury or property damage must begin within three years of the date of the incident. However, it is important to note that there are certain exceptions to this three-year rule.
For example, a skiing slip and fall accident is subject to a shorter, one-year statute of limitations. An experienced Burlington slip and fall lawyer could help organize and prepare a claim within the statute of limitations so that you do not lose your legal rights.
Reach Out to a Burlington Slip and Fall Attorney Today
You may be recovering from bodily injuries and emotional shock as a result of your accident. Adjusting to life after the incident can take time. You should not let this stop you from consulting our legal team at Champlain Valley Law as soon as possible. It can be advantageous to have Drew on your side from the beginning. Call a Burlington slip and fall lawyer today for a free consultation to discuss your options.