Marion County Slip and Fall Lawyer
If you suffered an injury in a slip and fall on someone else’s property, you might have a claim for compensation. Recovering damages on your own can be challenging, however. Plaintiffs may be at a serious disadvantage without the help of a practiced personal injury attorney.
When you enter another person’s property, you deserve to do so safely. Following an injury, a Marion County slip and fall lawyer could help you pursue litigation against the responsible property owner or manager.
Establishing Negligence in a Slip and Fall Claim
Because of the complexities of state law, not every slip and fall accident will result in a valid claim for compensation. Whether or not a person had a right to be present on the property will weigh heavily on the strength of a claim.
In Marion County, whether or not a person was trespassing is a crucial factor. According to West Virginia Code Section 55-7-27, a trespasser has no valid claim against a property owner for the injuries in a slip and fall. This is true no matter how negligent the property owner might have been. Only intentional or willful injuries could provide a trespasser with grounds to file suit.
Anyone with the right to enter the property has more extensive legal protections. This could include a guest with a personal invitation to someone else’s home or a patron at a retail store. If a Marion County slip and fall attorney can show the defendant failed to take reasonable steps to protect their visitors or customers, the victim could recover compensation for their injuries.
Open and Obvious Hazards
In Marion County and throughout West Virginia, the open and obvious doctrine applies to premises liability cases, including slip and falls. This legal theory – codified at West Virginia Code Section 55-7-28 – provides an additional defense for property owners.
Under this theory, a plaintiff may not recover monetary compensation for a slip and fall injury if they should have recognized the danger. Specifically, any hazard that is open, obvious, or well known to a plaintiff cannot be grounds for a trip and fall injury claim.
A court could find that a hazard was open and obvious if there were signs nearby warning of the danger. Additionally, evidence the plaintiff was previously made aware of the hazard could also apply. While this statute can be problematic, a Marion County slip and fall attorney could assist a plaintiff in navigating the defense.
Speak with a Marion County Slip and Fall Attorney
Due to the unique legal theories that surround slip and fall claims, taking on a case on your own could be a substantial risk. Without intending to, an inexperienced plaintiff could put their injury claim at risk.
The right legal counsel could guide you through the claims process and help you put forth the strongest case possible. To learn more about your legal options, consider speaking to a Marion County slip and fall lawyer as soon as possible. Call right away to set up a free consultation.