Every winter in Massachusetts, we face the inevitable risks that come with snow and ice. Slips and falls on the ice are extremely common and can lead to painful injuries and costly medical bills.
If you have been injured due to a slip or fall on commercial or private property, it is essential that you immediately retain the services of a personal injury attorney to ensure that your rights are protected. You could be entitled to compensation to cover your healthcare costs, pain and suffering, lost wages, and any other monetary losses you may have incurred as a result of your injury. Remember, the statute of limitations is three years to file a suit for personal injury.
Property Owners’ Liability
Property owners have a duty to ensure that their sidewalks, driveways, parking lots, and walking areas are safe for visitors. In the winter, responsible property care means that snow and ice is removed in a timely manner with reasonable precautions, like salting walkways or posting warning signs.
In Massachusetts, snow removal regulations may differ by municipality. Use this Sidewalk Snow Removal Map by mass.gov to determine if your accident resulted from a violation of snow removal policies in your town. Keep in mind that these policies may differ for homeowners, business owners, and cities/towns.
The responsibility to keep walkways and public areas free from snow and ice extends to your employer as well. Nationally, slip-and-fall accidents comprised a quarter of work-related injuries in 2015 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics), and there are federal guidelines per OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Act; see §1910.22(d)) which require employers to meet specific safety standards. If you believe that your workplace injury occurred because your employer failed to follow federal guidelines intended to prevent dangerous working conditions, you need an attorney to represent your interests and make sure you receive the compensation you’re owed.
Falls are a major cause of injury, particularly among older adults (age 65 and over). A study by the Injury Surveillance Program and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health showed that just among older adults, there were 61,466 fall-related injuries treated in Massachusetts hospitals in 2010. This statistic does not even include injuries treated at a doctor’s office.
In the winter time, the risk of falling increases for all age groups, though the risk of serious injury is heightened for older adults. If you have been injured from a fall on the ice due to negligent property care, know your rights and seek the help of a professional attorney.
Claim The Compensation You Deserve If You’re Injured from a Slip and Fall
If you’ve been injured by a slip and fall on someone else’s property, it’s important that you speak with a local personal injury attorney. You may not think much of your injury at the time, but down the road it could develop serious complications. It’s essential that you act immediately to make sure that your rights are protected. Peter Ventura has extensive experience in this area of practice, and has helped his clients realize significant compensation in personal injury cases over the years, including:
- $475,000 in a case where a woman sustained permanent injuries from a fall at a supermarket that failed to post warning signs after waxing the floor
- $180,000 in a case where the plaintiff required ankle surgery after a fall on the ice on a poorly lit sidewalk at an apartment complex
- $126,000 in a case where a tenant fell on the snow and ice on a sidewalk at her apartment and had to undergo ankle surgery
The bottom line is, if you slip and fall and sustain injuries on someone else’s property, an experienced personal injury attorney can help you receive the compensation you are owed. Contact Peter Ventura toll-free at 508-755-7535 for a free and always confidential consultation.