Slips, trips and falls, when do you have a claim?

All of us slip, trip or fall over from time to time and the results can be anything from damaged pride to a serious personal injury like broken bones. Accidents can happen anywhere from residential streets to shopping centres, so how do you know if you are able to make a personal injury compensation claim?

Whose fault was the accident?

The first thing to assess is whether the accident was your fault. If it was your fault then you do not have a claim for compensation. If somebody else was responsible you may well have a personal injury claim.

To make a claim there needs to be somebody – whether it be a council or business – who was negligent in their duty of care. For example, a council has a duty to ensure the upkeep of pavements in a timely manner. For private businesses they may not have mopped up a spillage on the floor that resulted in you being injured. Shops, restaurants and pubs have a duty to deal with a potentially slippery floors as soon as the problem is seen and to then put up signs warning people of the danger.

What should you do if you have a slip, trip or fall?

There are a number of things you can do to support any potential compensation claim. These include:

  • Take photos – Make sure you capture the scene immediately after the accident with plenty of photos as these will be important for your claim. Take pictures of the scene, but also the surrounding area to show if there weren’t any warning signs.
  • Take witness details – People will probably rush to your aid when you hurt yourself. If that is the case, make sure you take the witness’ contact details as a statement from then could support your case.
  • Get medical treatment – Even if you feel okay it is a good idea to get your injuries medically assessed. It is important to have a medical record of your injuries as this will help decide the amount of compensation you receive. Also, take pictures of your injuries as these can be useful evidence.

How much a claim is worth will depend on a number of factors including the pain and suffering caused, loss of earnings, travel and medical expenses and any care that was needed as a result of the accident.

Whatever your personal injury after a slip, trip or fall, if you follow these steps you will ensure you have the best possible chance of making a claim.