Trip and falls commonly occur on sidewalks in Los Angeles. Over the course of time, sidewalks deteriorate due to heavy usage and other environmental factors. This wear and tear causes uneven, cracked, and raised sidewalks, which are dangerous to pedestrians. Trip and falls on sidewalks often result in serious physical injuries. The experienced attorneys at the Slatter Law Firm will aggressively fight to recover the maximum compensation for your injuries.
Trip and falls on sidewalks are governed by the laws of negligence. The owner of the property where the particular sidewalk is located owes a duty of care to any individuals on the sidewalk. This duty requires the property owner to regularly and appropriately inspect the sidewalk for any unsafe or hazardous conditions. The law requires the property owner to repair any such conditions.
In order to establish that the property owner was negligent, your slip and fall attorney must show the following:
- The sidewalk was in an unsafe condition;
- The property owner knew or should have known about the conditions that caused your injury
- The property owner failed to repair or warn of the condition within a reasonable time; and
- The property owner’s failure was a proximate cause of your injury.
Fault depends on ownership, possession, or control of the sidewalk that caused your injury. In Los Angeles, sidewalks may be owned, possessed, or controlled by the local municipality, such as the city or County; homeowner; or commercial property owner. Generally, the local municipality is responsible for sidewalk maintenance. However, there may be disputes between these persons regarding ownership, possession, or control. An experienced slip and fall attorney will thoroughly investigate the applicable ordinances and land records to determine which persons are responsible for sidewalk maintenance.
There are additional factors that affect the property owner’s responsibility for your trip and fall. If the sidewalk is unevenly raised less than one inch, it is deemed a “trivial defect.” In such cases, the Court may rule that the property owner was not required to repair this condition. Additionally, when the uneven or raised portion of the sidewalk is caused by a tree’s roots, the at-fault person is the owner of such tree.
If you are injured as a result of a trip and fall on a sidewalk, it is important that you not only save the shoes worn during your fall, but also not wear them again. Those shoes may be needed to prove that they were appropriate for sidewalk use and did not cause your fall and injuries.
If you are injured in a trip and fall on a sidewalk, you may recover compensation for the following:
- Medical bills;
- Future medical treatment
- Loss of income;
- Loss of earning potential;
- Compensation for scars or disfigurement; and
- Pain and suffering.
Generally, lawsuits must be filed in Court within the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations for trip and falls on sidewalks depends on the identity of the property owner. There is a two year statute of limitations for slip and fall cases against private property owners. However, if the owner is a public entity, an administrative claim must be filed with the entity within six (6) months of the date of injury. As such, it is important to contact a Los Angeles slip and fall attorney immediately after your trip and fall.Contact Us Today
Contact a Los Angeles personal injury attorney today if you or a loved one suffered a trip and fall on a sidewalk. The Slatter Law Firm has been helping individuals injured due to slip and falls throughout Los Angeles and Southern California for over four decades. To schedule a free consultation, call our office at (310) 444-3010 or contact us online.