What is the Difference Between Slips, Trips, and Falls?
Bill Allen | December 21, 2022 | Slip & Fall Accidents
Were you injured on another party’s property in a “slip and fall” or “trip and fall” accident? If so, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries by filing a premises liability lawsuit. However, does it matter whether you slipped or tripped before you fell for a personal injury claim?
What Is the Difference Between a “Slip & Fall” Accident and a “Trip & Fall” Accident in Florida?
Most people refer to these types of personal injury cases as “slip and fall” accidents. However, “slipping” and “tripping” are different. Even so, both types of falls typically fall under premises liability.
Trip and Fall Accidents in Gainesville, FL
Tripping accidents typically occur when someone’s foot hits an object causing them to lose their balance. The person’s foot remains fixed, but their body moves forward, and they fall.
Examples of things that can cause a trip and fall accident include:
- Raised door jams
- Uneven surfaces between elevators/escalators and the floor
- Uneven pavement and sidewalks
- Exposed wiring and cables
- Obstructions, such as concealed steps, floor mounts, debris, socket covers, etc.
- Damaged, uneven, or loose flooring, including tiles, carpets, wood flooring, and rugs
- Items left on the floor
- Insufficient lighting
The injuries from trip and fall accidents often include injuries to the hands, wrists, and arms. People instinctively extend their arms to break their fall. Facial injuries are also common because the person falls forward.
In addition to broken fingers, sprained wrists, and abrasions, trip and fall accidents cause neck injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and broken ankles.
Slip and Fall Accidents in Gainesville, FL
Slip and fall accidents occur when a person’s foot “slips” out from underneath them, causing them to fall. Typically, the person falls backward because their center of gravity shifts as their foot slides out in front of them.
Things that can cause a slip and fall accident include:
- Loose floor coverings
- Surfaces that are slick because of water, oil, grease, and other liquids
- Overly waxed or freshly waxed floors
- Floors covered with dust or other debris that create a slick surface
- Leaks and spills
When a person slips and falls, they can hit their head on a hard surface or object as they fall backward, causing a traumatic brain injury. Broken backs, arms, and legs are common injuries in a slip and fall accident. Other injuries include shoulder dislocations, hip fractures, spinal cord injuries, and neck injuries.
Filing a Slip & Fall or Trip & Fall Claim in Gainesville, FL
The legal elements you must prove to win your case are the same whether you trip or slip and fall.
You must prove:
- The property owner owed you a duty of care;
- A dangerous condition existed on the property that the owner knew or should have reasonably known existed;
- The property owner breached the duty of care by failing to warn you of the hazard or correct the hazard;
- The dangerous condition was the direct and proximate cause of your fall; and,
- You sustained injuries and damages because of your fall.
If possible, take photographs and make a video of the property conditions and what caused you to fall. Property owners often fix the condition that caused the fall. Also, ask witnesses for their names and contact information because they can describe the conditions at the time you fell.
Report the fall to the property owner if you can do so without causing further injury. Seek immediate medical treatment. Prompt medical care can help prove that the fall caused your injuries.
What Compensation Can I Receive for a Slip or Trip and Fall Accident in Florida?
The damages in a “slip and fall” or a “trip and fall” accident include economic damages for the financial losses caused by the fall.
Financial damages can include:
- Medical bills and expenses
- Out-of-pocket expenses and losses
- Physical therapy and rehabilitation
- Assistance with household chores and personal care
- Loss of income, earning capacity, and future wages
- In-home or long-term nursing care
Additionally, victims can recover compensation for their non-economic damages.
Pain and suffering damages include:
- Emotional distress
- Impairments and disabilities
- A decrease in quality of life
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Physical discomfort
The amount you receive for a slip and fall or trip and fall accident depends on several factors. Documenting damages and injuries can increase the settlement amount for a premises liability claim. Working with a Gainesville personal injury lawyer can also help you receive a fair settlement for your slip, trip, and fall accident claim.
Contact Our Gainesville Slip and Fall Accident Law Firm in North Central Florida
If you need legal assistance, contact the Gainesville slip and fall accident lawyers at Allen Law Firm at your nearest location to schedule a free consultation today.
We have three convenient locations in North Central Florida: