After three years of litigation, a man from Newton, New Jersey received a $1.9 million settlement in late 2011. The man’s injuries were a result of a slip and fall accident that occurred when he slid on untreated ice in the parking lot of a Perkins Restaurant in his area. The ice was located near a storm drain in an unlit area of the restaurant’s parking lot. The plaintiff suffered severe injuries to his back and shoulder as a result of the fall, and had to pay more than $250,000 out of pocket for treatment. Obviously, any Pompano Beach personal injury attorney would consider this a major victory for the victim.
Among his injuries, the man sustained multiple disk herniations in his lower back, and had to undergo spinal fusion surgery, which involved implanting various pieces of hardware in the lower parts of his spine. He was left with permanent disabilities and restrictions in his range of motion and ability to perform daily activities, as well as ongoing and chronic pain associated with the condition. The combination of his current—and future—disability, along with the severity of the initial injuries and the liability on the part of the Perkins Restaurant franchise owners in not treating the ice, meant that the settlement was relatively substantial.
The settlement was negotiated in a private mediation session with a retired judge, shortly before the case was scheduled to go to trial. It is true that in many slip and fall cases, there is some negligence inferred on the part of the plaintiff; for example, the defendant’s attorneys may ask why the plaintiff was walking in a particular location, or if the plaintiff took reasonable precaution. However, it is important to note that this is not always the case. In some circumstances, liability for the slip and fall accident belongs squarely to the property owner; in a case like this one, where the plaintiff would not have been able to see that there was ice due to the lack of lighting in that part of the parking lot, there is a responsibility on the part of the business owner to ensure that all areas of the parking lot are treated, in order to avoid an accident much like this one.
It can take a long time to complete the process for a personal injury claim, particularly a slip and fall accident. Many individuals do not go forward with the process of a slip and fall injury claim because they feel as though they may not have as good a chance to receive compensation, and that in the meantime, they have a great deal of expenses that are piling up. Consider, however, that many of those expenses would accrue with or without the claim, and that the best possibility to recouping your financial losses—losses caused by your injuries due to the negligence of another individual—is to pursue a claim with a qualified and experienced Pompano Beach personal injur lawyer specializing in slip and fall accidents. By working with an attorney, you can worry less about evidence and other matters, as they will tell you what is needed and help you make arrangements.