There comes a time of the year when slippery surfaces become commonplace. There is ice everywhere and whether or not you like it, you have to go out and do chores. There are many cases of slip and fall around this time of the year. As per the Centers for Disease Control, as many as 1 million Americans were hospitalized because of slip and fall injuries in 2017. As a leading personal injury attorney law firm in Ohio, Christopher Jackson Law is highly familiar with the hazards associated with wintertime stairways, sidewalks, walking paths and driveways when they are covered in ice. There are many injuries sustained in these winter months and one of the most common questions we hear is, "who is to be held liable for a slip and fall accident that happens on an icy surface?"
Many people who become a victim of an icy surface and sustain serious injuries consider it just a terrible misfortune. They don't think that an organization or a person can be blamed for their injuries, after all it was ice. However, this is not true. According to the personal injury laws in Ohio, it is the responsibility of the property manager to keep their property safe from any hazards that may result in an injury of a visitor. They need to take reasonable precautions to ensure their premises are hazard free. This responsibility includes parking lots, driveways, staircases and walkways that come within their premises. They need to make sure these places are free of ice and snow that may lead to someone slipping and falling. This is known as premises liability. It states that the premises owner is legally responsible for the safety of the people who are legally admitted to their property.
Premises Liability - Some Practical Examples
Determining who is at fault in a slip and fall injury case on icy surfaces is not easy. It is difficult to know who owns and controls the specific place where the fall occurred. Therefore, it is best to take help from an experienced personal injury attorney in Ohio who is well-versed with how slip and fall cases on icy surfaces work. Our personal injury attorneys at Christopher Jackson Law have years of experience handling such cases. Here are some examples of who is considered at fault in a slip and fall case on an icy surface.
Public and Private Sidewalks
Residents of Cincinnati, Ohio do not appreciate the fact that the owner or controller of a sidewalk is the one who is responsible for taking all the necessary actions to keep it safe and clear of ice and snow. If it is not a private sidewalk but a public one, it is the duty of the municipality to keep it clean. Sidewalks on the property of private businesses are their responsibility and if there is a one within the premises of your house, you need to be careful to keep it hazard free. If you are living in a rented house, you are responsible for keeping the sidewalk safe and clear of all kinds of hazards.
Entryways and Stairways
Just as is the case with sidewalks, the person who is responsible for the property is also responsible for keeping the stairways and entryways to their premises clean of ice and snow and any other hazards that may lead to an injury. It is your responsibility whether you own or rent the place. If it is a business or a shop, the responsibility falls to the facility manager, the business owner, or both. Private homeowners are also responsible for their properties and everything that comes under it.
Driveways and Parking Lots
The liability of a slip and fall accident on driveways falls on the property owner or renter as well. They are responsible for keeping their premises free of all kinds of hazards that may lead to an injury of the visitors. Same goes for parking lots as well. The owner of the parking lots, whether they are shopping malls, community centers or any other facility owners, are responsible for the slip and fall accidents that happen on their premises. They need to take reasonable measures to make sure their premises are safe for the people coming in.
What You May Recover
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident on an icy surface, you will be able to recover the cost of your medical bills by using either the contractor who has the responsibility of clearing the snow or ice or the property owner. If the injury you have sustained in very serious and you have to take days off work because of it, you will also be entitled to get the lost wages. You can also recover the compensation for pain and suffering you had to face because of the slip and fall injury due to someone else's fault.
Personal Injury Attorneys in Ohio
If you have been victim of a slip and fall case, you should file a lawsuit against the other party. The best thing to do is to get help with the legal process by having an experienced slip and fall injury lawyer in Ohio by your side. We, at Christopher Jackson Law, have highly seasoned attorneys who have worked on a number of slip and fall and other personal injury cases. We know the legal process inside out and will help you recover the right compensation for the damages you have suffered because of someone else's fault. Get in touch with us today to discuss your case via our free consultation service by calling: 513-861-8000.