Every winter, our firm gets inundated with phone calls from people who have been injured due to a slip and fall on snow and ice. The difficulty arises when we have to explain to these potential new clients that we cannot accept their case because their unfortunate accident did not result from anyone’s negligence. The truth is that sometimes when someone is injured after slipping and falling on ice, it really is just an accident.
When Slip and Falls are not Just an Accident
There are, however, instances where a slip and fall on ice is due to the negligence of another. There are basically three ways to prove a snow and ice case in New York:
- Prove that the defendant (i.e., property owner), created the condition which caused the fall. The best example of this would be the property owner who does a poor shoveling job of his walkway, leaving a sheet of ice.
- Prove that the defendant had knowledge or notice of the dangerous condition, but failed to timely rectify it. This sometimes becomes difficult because very rarely are such things documented. If possible, it is always best to speak to potential witnesses or neighbors who will testify that they informed the defendant of this dangerous condition.
- Prove that the defendant should have known about the condition but did nothing to remedy it. The obvious example is the defendant who still has a snow or ice covered walkway days or a week after a snowstorm.
In any event, our advice is to use as much caution as possible when walking during or after a snowstorm. Despite being able to prove any of the above, the defendant will always argue that the plaintiff bears some fault for not being careful while walking. Years of trial practice involving these cases has shown that jurors are always skeptical of the victim.
Contact Schwartzapfel Lawyers P.C.
If you think you have been injured as a result of a slip and fall on snow or ice due to someone’s negligence, please do not hesitate to give us a call. With over 150 years of experience, the attorneys at Schwartzapfel Lawyers P.C. are qualified and prepared to handle all of your legal needs relating to your personal injury claim. To receive your free case evaluation, call us now at 1-888-575-6410 or fill out our convenient online contact form.