If you were injured in a slip and fall accident in Virginia, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries from the negligent property or business owner. However, proving your case may be more complicated than you think. You need to retain an experienced premises liability attorney to increase the chances of winning your case.
What You Must Prove in a Virginia Slip and Fall Accident Claim
You have the burden of proving all the elements of your case in order to obtain damages for injuries. In Virginia, you must establish the following:
- Duty. You must show that the property or business owner owed a duty to you. It is often relatively easy to prove that they owed you a duty to maintain their property in a safe manner.
- Breach. You must prove that the owner breached their duty to you. This includes proving that they had reasonable notice of the dangerous condition and failed to take steps to correct it.
- Causation. You must establish that the owner caused your slip and fall accident and your injuries.
- Damages. You must prove the seriousness of your injuries and that you are entitled to the amount of compensation you are seeking.
Reasons Slip and Fall Accident Claims Are Difficult to Prove
Slip and fall accident cases can be much harder to prove than an auto collision claim, where there are often many witnesses, video footage, and a police report. Here are reasons that it could be more challenging for you to win your case:
- Lack of evidence. You will need evidence to prove your case. Unfortunately, there may be few witnesses to your fall. In addition, it can be difficult to establish the owner knew of the hazardous condition unless you can obtain their maintenance records, video footage, and witness statements that establish how long the dangerous condition existed.
- Liability. A common defense the insurance company for the negligent owner may raise is that you were partially at fault for causing your slip and fall accident. For example, they may claim that you caused it by running, wearing inappropriate shoes, ignoring warning signs they had posted, or engaging in distracting behaviors, like looking at your cellphone.
- Your injuries. The insurance company could also dispute the cause of your injuries, their seriousness, and the medical care necessary to treat them.
Do you need to file a claim for compensation for injuries you suffered in a slip and fall accident in Norfolk or Virginia Beach? Call our Norfolk office at 877-960-3441 or complete our online form to schedule your free initial consultation with our dedicated premises liability attorneys to learn how we can assist you.