Who Is Liable When You Slip and Fall on the Sidewalk?

Pedestrians on tiled sidewalk.

Out of all the different types of personal injury claims that an individual could be involved with, the most common is a slip and fall accident. There are thousands of slip and fall accidents every year, and while the majority of them occur in the home, it is also possible that you will fall and suffer an injury on a city sidewalk. However, contrary to what you might believe, liability in a sidewalk slip and fall accident isn’t always immediately clear

and depends on several factors.

Read about assigning liability in a slip and fall sidewalk claim and discover why your case needs the expertise of a personal injury attorney.

Sidewalks in Disrepair

While many people don’t realize it, cities hold very limited liability in relation to sidewalk slip and fall accidents. One case where the city may be liable is if you’ve suffered a fall due to a broken or cracked sidewalk. Cities are legally responsible for maintaining sidewalks meant for public usage, and when they allow a sidewalk to become dangerously broken, it leaves the possibility of a personal injury claim.

After suffering a fall on a broken city sidewalk, it’s crucial that you gather as much evidence as possible. If there were witnesses to your fall, collect statements from them and contact information in case you need them to testify in court. You also need to take pictures of the scene, making sure to document the broken sidewalk. With the right evidence, you may be able to mount a successful personal injury claim.

Accidents Involving Snow and Ice

A complicated issue when it comes to sidewalk slip and fall accidents is the presence of ice and snow. While cities are tasked with maintaining their sidewalks, they only have to remove ice and snow from sidewalks in front of public buildings. If you’ve slipped on an icy sidewalk in front of a business or a residence, you would bring a suit against the owner of the property instead of the city.

As with accidents involving broken sidewalks, you must document the scene of the accident when you fall on an icy sidewalk.

File a Notice of Claim

If you are considering filing a lawsuit against a city, you should be aware that you will first need to submit a notice of claim. By filing a notice, you are making the city aware that you are planning a personal injury claim. In your notice, you will describe your accident, explain your injuries and detail the damages you will be pursuing. If you’re unsure of how to write or file your claim, it’s a good idea to consult a personal injury attorney.

Retain a Personal Injury Attorney

Filing a personal injury claim against a city and proving its liability can be very difficult if you don’t have legal experience. Make sure your case is handled the right way by hiring a personal injury attorney from The Law Offices of Peter N. Davis & Associates, LLC.

The Peter N. Davis legal team understands how complicated injury claims against cities can be, and we’re ready to help you in whatever way we can. Schedule a free consultation today so that we can get started planning your claim.