“Slip and fall” is a term used for a personal injury case in which a person slips or trips and is injured on someone else’s property. These types of injuries often happen due to slippery floors, uneven surfaces or other hazardous conditions and tend to occur mostly in supermarkets, shopping centres or restaurants.
If your fall was a result of a property owner’s negligence or due to the negligence of the staff of a restaurant or shop, you may be able to lodge a personal injury claim and get compensation that will help pay your medical bills, loss of income, as well as pain and suffering.
What does the law say?
South African law requires that both property owners and the public take reasonable care to minimise or prevent harm occurring on a premises. This responsibility is referred to as a “duty of care”.
At a minimum, property owners or managers must warn the public of any potential dangers that they are aware of or that, by the reasonable care and diligence, they should be aware of. At the same time, the law requires that the public also takes reasonable and appropriate care of themselves when on the premises of another.
Do I have a claim?
To have a successful claim a person needs to prove negligence on the part of the property owner or management. If reasonable steps were taken by the owner or management to prevent any incident happening, they will likely not be liable for damages.
If, however, the owner or manager did not provide reasonable protection or warning and was negligent, therefore violating their duty of care, they may be liable for your injury and you will have a valid claim.
Who is liable for a slip and fall injury?
Business and property owners are legally responsible for their private properties, most of which are protected by public liability insurance which allows for compensation to injured parties as well as any legal costs which may arise due to negligence.
If the accident occurs in a public area, then the local municipality and government are responsible for any claims.
What must I do if I am a victim of a slip and fall accident?
If a fall occurs that has resulted in injury, seek medical treatment immediately. Even minor injuries can sometimes lead to complications, so it is always best to get checked out by a medical professional. Also, you will need thorough medical records to support your claim.
Document the incident with photographs and write down all the details about what happened. Get contact details of any witnesses. Contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible so that they can review your case and begin gathering evidence. Do not discuss the case with anyone or sign any documentation before consulting with your attorney.
Get the best personal injury attorney for your case
At Elmarié de Vos Inc we have been specialising in personal injury law in South Africa for nearly 20 years. Our team is well experienced with slip and fall cases and will gather the right evidence and witness testimony to help ensure successful litigation. We operate on a contingency basis which means that we only get paid when you get paid, so there are no upfront costs.
We can help you get fair and reasonable compensation for your slip and fall injury. Fill in our easy form here and tell us your story: https://elmariedevosinc.co.za/tell-us-your-story
The information on these web pages is provided for general information purposes and is not intended to be stand-alone legal advice. Always consult a suitably qualified attorney for individual advice regarding your legal matter.