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Slip, Trip & Fall Compensation Claims – Am I Covered In A Public Place?

By 29 November 2013News & Articles

If you suffer a fall in a public place or at work, it can be a very distressing and humiliating event which often results in suffering a serious injury.

Injuries in Public and Private Spaces

Everyday, Queenslanders are often injured as a result of a slip, trip or fall. All shops, workplaces, restaurants and other public and private venues or associations have a duty to ensure that their premises are safe for their visitors and customers.

However, throughout Queensland, breaches of these duties result in a number of injuries occurring from tripping and slipping including:

  • Uneven surfaces
  • Worn and frayed carpets
  • Liquid on the shop and restaurant floors
  • Food spillages
  • Unattended wires and cables
  • Slippery or uneven flooring in shopping centres and supermarkets
  • Dangerous or messy building and construction development sites

If you have sustained personal injury as a result of a fall, then you should seek urgent advice in regards to your compensation entitlements. By visiting our Free Case Review page, GC Law can help you pursue slip and fall claims in Queensland for personal injuries and ensure that you receive the proper compensation you may be entitled to for pain and suffering and any financial losses you may have had (including any loss of earnings).

slip sign

What to do After a Fall in Public

It’s common when someone slips or falls, that the first thing they do is look around to see who’s watching. Then to save the embarrassment they may get up and simply walk away as nothing had happened. In this case, you need to stop, turn around and have a look at what caused them to fall and if possible, get the name and number of any witness.

If this is not done, do not worry, the chances are that we may still be able to help you pursue your legal entitlements, without any hassles.

There are some important points to keep in mind though, if you or someone you know of, such as family or friends, has suffered personal injuries as a result of a slip, a trip or a fall:

  • Try and take photographs of the area where you fell as soon as possible after the injury
  • Make a note of the contact details of any witness to your slip, trip or fall
  • If the fall was in a restaurant or shop, make sure you report the matter to a member of staff, or security, before you leave the premises
  • Seek immediate legal help and assistance regarding your rights to claim compensation.

Slips, trips and falls do occur in almost any location. Some of the most common locations include:

1. Shopping Centre’s & Supermarkets

There are many different types of injuries that occur from accidents in shopping centres and supermarkets. When you walk into a shop or supermarket, you enter business premises owned or rented by the business. The business is responsible for accidents caused on their grounds, so if you have suffered from a slip, trip or fall while shopping then you could be entitled to significant compensation.

Injuries can occur in shopping centres where the floor is slippery or there are objects on the floor causing the floor to be in a hazardous condition. General accidents can also occur as you walk around a shopping aisle and your clothing gets trapped on the shop floor fittings causing you to trip or slip straight onto the shopping cart and to the ground.

Remember, no matter how trivial the accident is, making a claim helps to compensate you for the injury that resulted from the accident.

2. Private Footpaths and Walkways

Some of the most common accidents occur on public or private grounds. General slip, trip and falls occur every day on both public footpaths and private walkways.

Personal injuries on private footpaths and walkways can also occur as a result of the following:

  • Uneven stones, pavements, footpaths
  • Protruding tree roots
  • Holes and crack in the concrete and other surfaces
  • Poor lighting
  • Damaged fences or lose barb wiring
  • Inadequate warning signs
  • Unguarded work by contractors
  • Slips on dangerous, polished or wet surfaces
  • Slips down stairs that are in poor condition or in a dangerous position
  • Falls in obstructed walkways, stairs or corridors

Businesses are responsible for their business premises. All businesses should have public liability insurance policies that should cover your claim. So, if you have suffered personal injuries as a result of an accident that occurred on private property, you should consider making a claim for compensation.

At time of writing, public footpaths are not eligible for slip and fall claims. Local authorities cannot be held responsible for accidents that occur due to pavements that are incomplete, faulty or in need of repair. This is a recurring point of contention for many, however the Government claims local authorities have limited financial resources and so cannot reasonably be expected to keep every footpath in perfect condition, free from cracks and hazards.

3. Construction Zones Or Work Places

Slips, trips and fall accidents are a leading cause of injury across all industries. But in construction, falls are particularly devastating, accounting for more worker deaths than any other hazard.

Sadly, almost all of these types of injuries are entirely preventable. Floors and stairs can be cleaned when something is spilt, non-slip mats can be replaced when grip wears out and railings can be placed across wall openings and unfinished structures. But often these simple measures aren’t taken.

Cracked foot path next to digger

How long do you have to seek compensation for a slip and fall?

In Queensland you have three years to make your slip and fall compensation claim after the incident occurred. At GC Law, we recommend seeking advice immediately after the accident as it may be harder to acquire evidence of negligence in order to prove your claim.

What are the settlement amounts for slips and falls in Queensland?

There is a wide margin of difference for slip and fall case settlement amounts in Queensland. This is due to a wide number of factors including the extent of the injury, the permeance of the injury and the conditions under which it occurred. The settlement amount for slips and falls in Queensland can vary from a few thousand, to tens of , if not hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on the injuries and losses incurred.

Settlement amounts are intended to cover compensation claims and may cover:

  • Medical costs (past and future)
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost income (past and future)
  • Home help and attendant care

In order to find out whether you are entitled to claim compensation for your personal injuries all you need to do is visit our Free Case Review page or call GC Law direct on 1300 302 318.

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