Staten Island Snow & Ice Injury Attorneys
In the case that an individual faces a slip and fall accident on snow or
ice they might be entitled to file a lawsuit against the responsible party.
In fact, snow and ic accidents are some of the most common types of slip
and fall accidents. The law requires that property owners maintain responsibility
for their premises by shoveling any present snow or ice. In the case that
a property owner fails to do so and an individual is injured as a result,
the property owner might be held liable for his or her negligent behavior. At
Queller, Fisher, Washor, Fuchs & Kool our premises liability attorneys have experience defending the rights
of those who have been unnecessarily injured in slip-and-fall accidents.
Our attorneys have secured a number of favorable verdicts in slip and
fall cases, amongst which there is one for $1.5 million. Our experienced
attorneys will do their very best to ensure that you receive your maximum
Consequences of Property Owners’ Failure to Maintain Their Premises
Commercial, residential and public property owners can be held liable for
accumulations of snow or ice on their property in the case that the fail
to shovel, plot or salt their property. According to New York City law
property owners are required to clear any accumulations of snow or ice
on their property within a reasonable time period following a storm. Typically,
property owners are required to remove any accumulation on their property
within four hours of a storm. In the case that a property owner fails
to follow through on their duty and as a result an individual is injured,
the property owner can be held liable for his or her negligence.
Establishing Liability in Snow or Ice Accidents
Most commonly, accidents occur in New York City on private property or
on sidewalks, In the case that the accident occurs on private property,
the landowner or the tenant might be held liable for their negligence.
Alternatively, if the accident occurs on a sidewalk, the property owner
adjacent to the sidewalk might be held liable for his negligent behavior.
Establishing liability or fault depends on issue of “notice”.
This issue surmises a conjecture as to whether enough time had passed
between the occurrence of the storm and the accident for a reasonable
person to have taken notice of and removed the snow or ice. In order to
prove “notice” or that the defendant knew or should have known
of the dangerous condition prior to your accident, there are numerous
issues that must be carefully investigated by your attorney. Additionally,
the discovery phase of your case needs to be carried out properly if a
settlement is to be recovered.
One such issue is when the poor weather occurred. Weather reports can often
be obtained to determine how much and what type of precipitation (rain,
sleet, snow) fell on the day of your accident and on the days before your
accident. The records should be obtained from the weather station closest
to the accident location, and a certified copy of such records may be
needed for admissibility purposes in the event that your case goes to
trial. Of course, if the condition that caused your accident still exists,
photographs should be taken whenever possible. Also, an investigation
should be done to determine the identity of any eyewitnesses to the conditions
that were present at the time of your accident. Such witnesses may be
helpful at trial, or in laying the foundation for settling your case through
deposition testimony regarding the dangerous conditions.
As the litigation proceeds, your attorney will have the opportunity to
take the deposition of one or more representatives of the defendant property
owner or property tenant. Sometimes a deposition is taken of a representative
of a management company for the property. At this point, the issue of
"notice" (i.e., what the defendant knew and when they knew it)
is further investigated. A good attorney will do a full interrogation
regarding many factors that may be crucial to proving liability or fault
in your case. These include but are not limited to finding out information
regarding the following:
- The identity of any and all employees or agents of the defendant who had
opportunity to observe and/or become aware of the dangerous conditions.
- The identity of any persons whose job responsibilities included monitoring,
inspecting, or cleaning the accident location, including but not limited
to the responsibility of clearing the relevant area of snow and ice.
- Any schedules that were in effect and any practice and procedure that the
property owner or other defendant followed for inspecting or cleaning
- Any records that exist regarding any of the above, and any records that
exist regarding actual steps that were taken to clear the dangerous area
of snow and/or ice prior to your accident
If the defendant claims they actually did take steps to clear the sidewalk,
questions need to be answered regarding the manner in which it is claimed
that the sidewalk was cleared. For example, what equipment was allegedly
used to clear the sidewalk? Was a snowplow or other machinery used? Were
manual methods to clear the sidewalk such as use of snow shovels or salting
of the sidewalk employed? If so who did this and when?
The aforementioned issues are amongst the myriad of questions your attorney
at Queller, Fisher, Washor, Fuchs & Kool will investigate. Lawsuits
involving slip and fall accidents on ice normally deal with transient
conditions. A transient condition is one, which may have existed temporarily
but vanishes soon after. The property owner or tenant may defend your
lawsuit by claiming that the dangerous or defective condition never existed
in the first place. Alternatively the defendant may argue that even if
the condition did exist, they did not know about it in time so that in
the exercise of reasonable care they could have done anything about it
prior to the time your accident happened. Additionally, the defendant
might also claim that the victim’s injuries are unrelated to the
accident or that the accident did not even occur to being with. Companies
and individual’s attempting to avoid liability will attempt to put
forth a myriad of reasons. Consequently, it is imperative that you retain
a qualified and experienced attorney in the case that you have been seriously
injured as a result of a slip or fall on snow or ice.
Injuries Resulting From Falls on Ice or Snow
Accidents resulting on snow or ice have the potential to result in serious
injury particularly in cases involving elderly individuals. Some of the
common injuries resulting from premises liability claims include:
- Leg injuries
- Broken bones
- Knee injuries
- Back injuries
- Neck Injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Brain injuries
However, the sustaining of an injury is not sufficient grounds for a lawsuit,
it must also be demonstrated that the injury resulted in economic or non-economic
damages. Economic damages pertain to any medical costs incurred due to
the accident that are not covered by insurance where as non economic damages
refer to any emotion stress or pain and suffering caused by the accident.
Nature of Compensation Available
Individuals injured due to a slip and fall accident on snow or ice may
have the option to recover compensation through a premises liability lawsuit.
Amongst the compensable damages are economic damages such as lost wages
or medical bills. Lost wages refer to any loss of income or damage to
future earning potential, which needs to be compensated. Additionally,
victims may also receive compensation for medical bills, procedures and
medications resulting from the injury. In the case that an injury proves
to be fatal, the family of the victim may be able to recoup compensation
through a wrongful death lawsuit. In a wrongful death lawsuit, families
of victims may be able to recoup compensation for damages such as loss
of consortium, lost wages and damage to future earning potential, funeral
costs and pain and suffering.
Contact Queller, Fisher, Washor, Fuchs & Kool Today
In the case that you, or a loved one, has sustained a slip and fall injury
due to another individual’s negligence, it is imperative that you
contact the New York law office of Queller, Fisher, Washor, Fuchs &
Kool today at (212)-406-1700 in order to schedule your free consultation
during which we will review the facts of your case and your legal options.
Queller, Fisher, Washor, Fuchs & Kool accepts cases on a contingent
fees basis that is; no monetary fees are expected of you unless and until
we are able to secure a favorable settlement on your behalf.