‘Tis the Season: What To Do After a Slip and Fall Accident
It’s no secret that Michigan winters can involve a lot of snow and ice. If you’ve lived in Michigan for a while, you know that some winters will be colder and snowier than others. But even during a mild winter, there will still be some snow and ice to deal with, making it harder to drive or even walk places.
Slip and falls are one of the most common types of accidents, sending over a million people to the hospital every year, and winter is one of the riskiest times of year for them to happen. Not only do snow and ice make it easier for people to slip, having less daylight during the winter months makes it harder to watch out for patches of ice.
One of the scariest things about slip and fall accidents is that they can truly happen to anyone. And even though many slip and falls result in nothing more than some bruises or scrapes, they often cause much more severe injuries like broken bones, fractures, sprained muscles, back injuries, concussions, and other types of traumatic brain injuries. It only takes a second for a slip and fall to occur, so it’s easy to be completely overwhelmed when they happen. If you’re injured in a slip and fall accident this winter, here are a few things you need to do afterward.
Get Medical Attention
If you slip and fall and have any reason at all to suspect you might possibly have injuries more severe than a bruise or a scrape, it’s extremely important to get medical attention right away. Especially if you hit your head when you fell. Sometimes, symptoms of injuries aren’t noticeable right away, so it’s best to get checked by a doctor right away.
If you know you have a serious injury, head for the emergency room. But if you’re not sure of the extent of your injuries or if you’ve been injured at all, go to an urgent care clinic. Many insurance companies will try to deny claims for slip and fall injuries if the victim waited to get medical attention, so it’s extremely important to see a doctor immediately.
Anything you can do to document your case will be extremely helpful. You’ll have a lot to deal with after your accident, so you don’t want to forget any of the details.
If you’re able to take pictures of the scene of your accident immediately after your accident occurs, do so. That would be a very valuable piece of evidence since it would show the exact location and conditions at the time of the incident. Keep a journal with notes about things like how your injury impacts your life each day, your doctor appointments, or medications you take for your injury. (Don’t worry about being too detailed in these notes!) Get the names and contact information of anyone who witnessed your accident. Try to preserve the clothes you were wearing at the time of the accident, because they might be able to be used as evidence.
Identify the Property Owner / Report the Accident
When you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident, it’s extremely important that the property owner be notified as soon as possible. For accidents that occur in businesses or other commercial properties, this will likely mean filing an accident report and talking to a manager. If you were injured on an apartment or other rental property, the landlord would need to be informed. In the case of injuries that occur on public property, the city or state that owns and maintains the property would need to be informed.
Talk to a Lawyer
Slip and fall accidents can get very complicated, so it’s best to get the help of a slip and fall lawyer. Between insurance companies and property owners, you’re going to be dealing with a lot of people who are only interested in getting you to settle for as little as possible, not for what you really need. A slip and fall lawyer will be able to understand all the details of your case and can help see to it that you get the compensation you need for any long-term medical needs you might have.