Buffalo Slip and Fall Lawyer

man injured in the hand speaking to a woman over the table

Slips and falls can lead to serious harm that affects you for months or even years. Property owners in New York have a legal duty to maintain reasonably safe premises and may be held liable if they fail to remove hazards or warn visitors. If you were injured in a fall on someone else’s property, you may be eligible for substantial compensation through a lawsuit.

However, compensation is not automatic after falling on someone else’s property. You normally must prove that you fell because of the property owner’s negligence. Our award-winning Buffalo slip and fall lawyers are compassionate and aggressive advocates for injury victims. We have deep local roots in Buffalo and Western New York, and we know what it takes to hold negligent property owners accountable.

We are standing by to answer your questions and make sure you know your rights at no cost to you. Call (716) 500-5678 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.

Why Choose Richmond Vona for Your Buffalo Slip and Fall Case?

Property owners and insurance companies are normally quick to blame victims. Owners may deny responsibility and even remove evidence from the site of your fall. Insurance companies may use your age or health as an excuse to pin the blame on you. Their objective is always to pay as little compensation as possible. When you have our top-rated Buffalo premises liability lawyers on your side, their underhanded tactics will not work.

Co-founder John E. Richmond was born and raised in Western New York and developed extensive personal injury experience in Buffalo before establishing our firm. He earned his law degree from Seton Hall University School of Law. Co-founder Keith R. Vona also has extensive experience practicing personal injury law and earned his law degree from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. Under their leadership, we have been widely recognized in the news as a leading personal injury law firm.

What Evidence Does Richmond Vona Gather for a Slip and Fall Case?

After a slip and fall accident, it is crucial to contact our personal injury law firm in Buffalo as soon as possible. We will thoroughly investigate your fall accident and identify all liable parties. Among other things, you can count on our aggressive, results-oriented slip and fall attorneys to: 

  • Visit the scene and gather all available evidence of slip and fall hazards before it disappears.
  • Locate, request, and, if necessary, subpoena video footage of your accident.
  • Interview eyewitnesses and good samaritans who helped you after your fall.
  • Interview employees and review incident reports if you fell at a local business.

If you were able to gather important information after your fall, such as witness names and contact information or footage of the scene, be sure to share it with our attorneys. However, if you were unable to gather evidence on your own, we will take care of it. While you focus on your medical treatment and recovery, we will deploy our legal skills, expertise, and resources to navigate your Buffalo slip and fall case.

Many of our Buffalo clients fall on uneven walkways found throughout our community or on slippery sidewalks after property owners fail to remove snow and ice. Rough winters bring the City of Good Neighbors together, but they should not excuse property owners when their negligence leads to preventable falls.

What You Can Do While We Work on Your Case

In addition to completing your medical treatment and turning over any evidence you collected, we may ask you to write down everything you saw and experienced before, during, and after your fall. You should do so while your memory is fresh. Remember, even minor details could make a big difference in your case.

Once we file your slip and fall lawsuit, we or the side’s attorneys may also request a deposition, which involves giving out-of-court testimony under oath. Don’t worry. We will help you prepare ahead of time so you can testify with confidence.

While your case progresses, and especially before consulting with an attorney, you should avoid:

  • Talking about your accident or injuries with people who could compromise your case, especially in writing and on social media.
  • Admitting fault, signing paperwork from insurers, providing recorded statements, and accepting fast settlement offers.

If you receive a call from an insurance company, simply refer them to your attorney. This is the best way to protect your legal rights and options.

What Is The Deadline for Filing a Slip and Fall Accident Claim in New York?

Under the New York personal injury statute of limitations, you generally must file your slip and fall accident lawsuit within three years after your fall. If the accident was fatal, the decedent’s legal representative has two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit. If you miss the correct deadline, you will lose your right to pursue compensation.

The New York statute of limitations is complex, and there are many exceptions, some of which shorten the deadline. Contact our knowledgeable slip and fall attorneys in Buffalo as soon as possible to protect your claim.

How a Slip and Fall in a Local Municipality Affects Your Case

If you slip and fall on government property, such as a city-owned park, building, or sidewalk, you may be able to file a claim against the City of Buffalo or the responsible state agency. Though you will still need evidence to prove negligence, the procedures for filing your lawsuit will differ.

One of the most important differences is the governing deadlines. You must send a Notice of Claim to the responsible government agency within 90 days after your fall. Further, you must file your lawsuit within one year and 90 days from the date of the accident.

Damages Available in Slip and Fall Accidents

After a slip and fall accident, you may be entitled to recover compensation for your financial losses, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and lost future earning. These are known as economic damages. You may also be entitled to recover non-economic damages, which compensate for intangible losses like pain, suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.

How Much Compensation Can I Recover in a Slip and Fall Lawsuit?

Your damages will vary based on the unique facts of your case. Important factors include:

  • The type and severity of your injury – The more serious your injury, the higher your potential compensation. Falls are a leading cause of traumatic brain injury, especially among the elderly. Falls can also cause spinal cord injuries and broken bones. Any of these can be permanently disabling, increasing your damages.
  • The financial impact – The more money you lose, the more compensation you may receive. This includes the cost of treatment, lost earning capacity, and time missed at work.
  • Your quality of life – If your injuries cause severe pain and suffering, this can increase your compensation, particularly if the effects are long-lasting.
  • The liable party – The identity of the liable party can determine the kind of insurance coverage and other funds they have to compensate you. Liable parties may include business owners, property management companies, homeowners, government entities, and others.
  • Shared fault – If you were partly to blame for the fall, you could still recover compensation, but it will be reduced in proportion to your share of fault. Our attorneys can push back against wrongful accusations.
  • The attorney you choose – The legal team you choose to handle your case can make a huge difference in its ultimate outcome. Our skilled slip and fall attorneys have the skills, experience, and resources needed to build the strongest case possible.

Dangerous Symptoms After a Slip and Fall

Some slip and fall injuries are immediately noticeable. However, what may seem like a minor injury can turn out to be much more serious. Many victims get right back up after a fall—no matter how much it hurts—and reassure others that they are okay, especially when the fall occurs in public.

This is a mistake. Remember to evaluate your injuries closely and take care so you do not exacerbate them. Some of the most serious injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, are only noticeable in the days and weeks after the fall. The longer you wait to seek medical attention, the more serious they can become.

Head Injuries

If you feel the following symptoms after a fall, especially if they worsen or don’t go away, you may have sustained a traumatic brain injury:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Memory loss
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

Seek immediate medical attention if you experience any of these symptoms. Remember, it is possible to suffer a traumatic brain injury whether or not you lose consciousness after a fall.

Back Injuries

If you fall and experience any of the following symptoms, you could have a herniated disc, broken vertebrae, or other spinal cord injury, all of which could cause long-term complications:

  • Numbness and tingling anywhere in the body
  • Weakness, paralysis, or loss of sensation anywhere in the body
  • Fever
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Persistent pain in any area of your back

Broken Bones

If you experience pain or swelling anywhere in your body, are unable to move like before, or cannot bear weight without discomfort, you may have broken bones. Broken hip bones are especially common among elderly fall victims. Hip fractures carry a high risk of death and overall decline in the months that follow, with 18 to 31 percent of people dying within a year.

If you experience hip pain or difficulty walking after a fall, get evaluated for a hip fracture as soon as possible. Our slip and fall attorneys in Buffalo are familiar with the best doctors in the region. We can help you get an accurate diagnosis and high-quality medical care.

How Liability is Determined in a Slip and Fall Accident

Before you receive compensation for most slip and fall accidents, you will need to prove that a property owner, manager, employee, or someone else responsible for the property on which you were injured negligently caused your fall. In other words, you need to prove that they violated their duty to keep their property reasonably safe. Among other things, this may involve proving that they knew or should have known about a hazard but failed to remove it.

Property owners should inspect their properties to spot hazards and protect visitors. Ideally, they should remove hazards when they identify them or post warning signs. Failure to remove or fix the following hazards may amount to negligence:

  • Snow and ice on walkways
  • Wet or greasy floors
  • Poorly maintained entrances and exits
  • Poor lighting in stairwells and other areas
  • Potholes and cracked sidewalks
  • Tripping hazards, such as fallen merchandise and stray power cords
  • Uneven or unstable flooring

What if the Fall Was Partly My Fault?

Never assume a fall was your fault without talking to one of our knowledgeable Buffalo slip and fall lawyers. Defendants and insurance companies will try to blame you—often without proof—to avoid compensating you fairly.

It is easy to blame yourself after falling, particularly if you have certain risk factors for falling, such as poor balance or vision. Even so, property owners must ensure properties are reasonably safe for all lawful visitors. If a hazard on the property caused your fall, the owner may be liable—regardless of your increased fall risk.

Even if you were partly to blame, you can recover legal compensation if the property owner was also negligent. Under New York’s pure comparative negligence law, you can recover compensation as long as the fall was not 100 percent your fault. For example, if the property owner was 60 percent responsible for your fall, they would be liable for 60 percent of your damages.

Slip and Fall Accidents in Buffalo Are Unexpected, Expect Richmond Vona By Your Side

If you were injured in a fall on someone else’s property, you may be entitled to significant compensation. Our knowledgeable and compassionate Buffalo slip and fall attorneys are serious trial lawyers. We will aggressively defend your rights while providing compassionate support and personalized legal guidance.

Our client testimonials speak for themselves. With more than $175 million in life-changing case results recovered on their behalf, you can rest assured that your claim is in capable hands. Our skilled attorneys will go above and beyond to get you the full and fair compensation you deserve. Contact us online or call (716) 500-5678 to schedule your free case evaluation.

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