Slip and Fall Injury – Medical Records Also Vital to Prove Causation

by | Published on Dec 19, 2014 | Medical Review Services

The cold season is here, and so are the prospects of slip and fall injuries caused by slippery sidewalks, puddles, cracks in the pavement and so on. This is the time when businesses as well as property owners should become aware about the possible hazards and ensure that the people on their premises are protected from falls. In slip and fall accidents that result in injuries, usually the owner of the property is held responsible. However, if the case gets to court, the plaintiff’s lawyer will have to prove causation between the oversight of the property owner/business owner and the damages that the injured person is claiming for the injury sustained.

Establishing Causation

In the context of a slip and fall injury, causation signifies that a reasonable person can anticipate a risk resulting from the carelessness of the property owner, and that if the property owner was careful enough the injury would not have happened.

  • The injured person’s lawyer has to demonstrate that the slipping hazard existed because of the property owner’s negligence.
  • He must demonstrate that the hazard caused the accident wherein his client slipped and fell.
  • Then it must be proved that the injuries sustained by his client were indeed caused by that accident.
  • He must also clarify that the damages his client seeks to collect were caused by those injuries.

Proving causation is not easy. Producing photographs of the wet leaves, snow or ice that caused the fall alone is not enough. The lawyer has to prove that the property owner/manager failed in his duty of care in such a way that he allowed the dangerous condition to persist. This is where the lawyer will have to obtain the testimony of a witness who may have seen the hazardous condition exist for quite some time.

Linking the hazard created by the slippery surface/snow/wet leaves and the accident in which the claimant slipped is also necessary to challenge the arguments the property owner’s insurance company may raise. Moreover, it must also be established with the help of a medical record review and the testimony of medical experts that the injuries were indeed caused by the fall that resulted from the particular hazardous condition, and not by any other condition. When it comes to the damages that are being claimed, the injured person’s attorney will have to show that the damages sought are perfectly reasonable for the extent of injuries sustained.

An experienced personal injury lawyer will help victims of slip and fall accidents recover the due compensation for their injuries resulting from the negligence of property managers/owners. In such personal injury cases, the service of medical review experts is indispensable in proving causation.

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