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Slip And Fall Due To Construction In Apartment Building

Discussions relating to Personal Injury Law

Slip And Fall Due To Construction In Apartment Building

Postby Eadric » Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:06 pm

Last month on 10/6 I slipped and fell in my Los Angeles apartment building as our hallway carpet was being replaced. I was in the elevator going up to my apartment from the parking garage. There was wet adhesive on the floor and as I walked past the construction workers I slipped on the adhesive and twisted my knee. My shoes were stuck in the adhesive and I had to pull them out. There were no signs in the elevator letting tennants know what was ahead, nor was the area marked off with caution tape. I went downstairs to management with my boyfriend who saw the whole thing happen. I was told that they would write up an incident report and put up signs. I found out today they didn't write a report on what happened. The management here today said they would write up a report. I asked for a copy and was told that it is a legal document and that they weren't sure I could have a copy and would get back to me. Since I had just moved and didn't have health insurance I didn't go to the doctor. I thought my knee would get better but it has gotten worse. I did take pictures of my knee. I used to be a runner and now can only do low impact exercises because my knee hurts when I run. Should I go see a Doctor(as of right now I still don't havev insurance)? Is it too late to do something?
Eadric
 
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Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:50 pm

Slip And Fall Due To Construction In Apartment Building

Postby Lucan » Wed Dec 07, 2016 9:31 pm

Jayme:

In California you have two years from the date of injury to either resolve your claim or file a lawsuit.  So based on your question, no it is not too late.

It is always a dilemma when you are injured and do not have health insurance.  If you simply go and see a doctor you will be expected to pay for the service.  If you are injured, and do not see a doctor it is difficult to prove that you actually were injured and the severity of the injury.

You should really get a consultation with a local personal injury attorney that is experience in handling fall cases.  Chose an attorney that does his own initial consult.  Don't waste your time with this type of injury fact pattern by talking to a non attorney from the law office.  You also want to talk face to face if you can, a lot can get missed in a telephone consult.  Don’t be afraid to call several attorneys.  There is going to be someone that wants to talk to you about the injury.  After the first consult, a second opinion is not a bad idea.

If you do not hire an attorney, you will need to file claim with the apartment’s insurance carrier.  If a large company there may be a risk management dept. that you will file a claim with.

It is possible that there is medical coverage for injuries regardless of whose fault the fall was.  In that case you would be able to see a doctor and get your bills paid.

If there is not a medical insurance policy you will have to try to settle the claim through the liability policy.  That would pay medical bills, pain and suffering, wage loss etc.  But in order to collect under the liability policy you will need to demonstrate that the fault lies with the apartment owner.  It is a very strong defense in a case such as the one you have described that the slip hazzard was "open and obvious" and that anyone getting off the elevator could readily see that construction/work was in progress and that there was a substance on the floor.  If that is the claim persons belief it will be hard to get them to pay your claim.  

That would leave you having to go to court on your own.  You would have to prove they were negligent and that the hazzard was not open and obvious.

There are many more legal theories that the defense could use, I just mentioned the one most obvious to me.

In addition to the apartment owner.  It may be that the at fault party is the company that was doing the work.  In that case you would be able to pursue that company in the same manner as the apartment owner.  You would probably go after both.  They will likely point fingers at each other.

As you can see, this type of matter can be complicated.  That is why you really need to consult with an attorney.  Falls are tough cases for attorneys.  They are tougher for the injured non attorney to do themself.

Good luck

David Demanski
Lucan
 
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Mar 20, 2014 12:08 pm


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