Whenever you enter another person’s property, whether it be a hotel, restaurant, supermarket, or otherwise, you must understand that there is a certain level of risk. This is because, unfortunately, property owners commonly act negligently in upkeeping their premises. Continue reading to learn how to prove a property owner knew of a hazard and how one of the experienced Panama City slip & fall accident attorneys at Manuel & Thompson, PA can help you collect evidence.
How do I prove a property owner was aware of a hazard?
You carry a burden of proof as the plaintiff of a slip and fall accident claim. This means that you must present a sufficient amount of proof in your claim proceedings that ties your injuries and damages to the negligence of the defendant, a property owner. Simultaneously, you must show that your accident was due to no fault of your own. More specifically, you must prove the following circumstances as fact:
- You must prove that you were a welcomed visitor or passerby of the premises, so the property owner owed you a duty of care.
- You must prove that the property owner knew about a hazard present on their premises; or, that a reasonable person would have detected the hazard.
- You must prove that the property owner ultimately breached their duty of care by failing to promptly clear or rectify the hazard.
- You must prove that you encountered this hazard on the premises, which subsequently caused you to sustain injuries and damages.
What types of evidence support this claim?
Now that you know what points to prove in your slip and fall accident claim, you must understand how to prove it. Evidently, the most pivotal pieces of proof exist at the scene of your accident. That said, it may be in your best interest to collect the following types of evidence:
- A copy of the accident report conducted by a law enforcement officer at the scene of your accident, which mentions the presence of the hazard.
- A copy of the incident report conducted by a property owner, if available, which admits the presence of the hazard.
- Photos and videos of the scene of your accident, which show the presence of the hazard.
- Testimonies made by witnesses present at the scene of your accident, which confirm the presence of the hazard.
- Testimonies made by employees or returning customers of the property, which confirm the presence of the hazard for days, weeks, or even months before your accident occurred.
This is all to say that you must take your slip and fall accident claim seriously. This starts with retaining the services of one of the skilled Panama City personal injury attorneys. Contact Manuel & Thompson, PA today.