Dover Slip and Fall Lawyers


$ millions

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You Are Entitled To Compensation For Premises Liability

Schmittinger & Rodriguez understands that a slip and fall accident can happen in an instant and can leave you with serious injuries and financial hardships. That’s the harsh reality. The good news is the law states that property owners have a legal obligation to ensure their premises are safe for visitors and guests, and when they fail to meet this duty, they can be held liable for any injuries that occur. This is an area of personal injury law known as Slip and Fall and Premises Liability.

According to the National Safety Council, slip and fall accidents are the third leading cause of unintentional injury-related deaths in the United States, and they account for 1 million emergency room visits each year. Additionally, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that slips, trips, and falls account for 15% of all accidental deaths, and they are the leading cause of workers’ compensation claims.

In Delaware, slip and fall accidents and other premises liability incidents can occur in a variety of settings, including stores, restaurants, apartment buildings, and private homes. These accidents can result in serious injuries, such as broken bones, head trauma, and spinal cord injuries, which can require extensive medical treatment and lost time from work.

What Constitutes A Slip & Fall
Case Under DE Law?

Under Delaware law, a slip and fall case can arise when a person is injured due to a dangerous condition on someone else’s personal or commercial property. Here are some key factors that may determine whether you have a valid slip and fall case under Delaware law:

    • Hazardous condition: A slip and fall case may be valid if a hazardous condition, such as a wet floor, uneven surface, or debris, caused the accident. The property owner may be liable if they knew or should have known about the dangerous condition and failed to address it.

    • Negligence: To have a valid slip and fall case, you must be able to prove that the property owner was negligent in their duty to maintain safe premises. This may involve showing that the property owner knew or should have known about the dangerous condition and failed to take reasonable steps to correct it.

    • Injuries: In order to have a valid slip and fall case, you must have suffered injuries as a result of the accident. These injuries may be minor or severe and include broken bones, head trauma, spinal cord injuries, and other serious medical conditions that require medical treatment, time off from work, physical therapy, and long-term care.

    • Comparative negligence: Delaware follows a modified comparative negligence rule, which means that your damages may be reduced if you are found to be partially at fault for the accident. For example, if you were texting while walking and didn’t see a “wet floor” sign, you may be found partially at fault for the accident and your damages may be reduced. Your facts and circumstances will be unique but this does not preclude a lawsuit.

    • Statute of limitations: In Delaware, slip and fall cases must be filed within two years of the date of the accident. If you fail to file your case within this time period, you may be barred from pursuing compensation.

If you have been injured in a slip-and-fall accident in Delaware, it is important to consult with an experienced attorney who can help you understand your legal options and fight for the compensation you deserve under the law. A knowledgeable attorney can evaluate the circumstances of your case, gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf and, if necessary, file a personal injury lawsuit to get the best possible outcome.

How Is Premises Liability Different Than Slip and Fall?

While slip and fall cases fall under the broader category of premises liability, there are important differences between the two. Here are some key ways in which premises liability cases may differ from slip and fall cases:

    • Scope of liability: Premises liability cases can arise from a wide range of dangerous conditions on a property, such as inadequate security, unsafe structures, and toxic substances. Slip and fall cases, on the other hand, typically involve injuries caused by a specific type of hazard, such as a wet floor or a cracked sidewalk.

    • Parties liable: In some cases, premises liability cases may involve multiple parties who are responsible for maintaining safe conditions on a property, such as landlords, property management companies, and maintenance contractors. Slip-and-fall cases may be more straightforward, with the liability falling primarily on the property owner.

    • Notice of hazard: In a premises liability case, the injured party may need to show that the property owner had notice of the dangerous condition and failed to take reasonable steps to correct it. In a slip and fall case, the injured party may only need to show that the dangerous condition existed and caused the accident.

    • Damages: Premises liability cases may involve a broader range of damages than slip and fall cases, such as lost wages, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. Slip and fall cases may focus primarily on compensation for medical bills and lost wages.

If you have been injured on someone else’s property in Delaware, it is important to consult with an experienced attorney who can help you understand the specific legal issues involved in your case. Whether you have a slip-and-fall case or a premises liability case, a knowledgeable attorney can help you navigate the legal process.

Get Started Today

Contact Schmittinger & Rodriguez

Our experienced team of slip and fall lawyers has decades of combined experience advocating for clients with personal injury claims arising out of fall accidents. Our legal team knows the legal issues, local, laws, your legal options, and how to recover compensation from the negligent party or from someone else’s negligence.

our reviews

What Our Clients Say

Brian Jenkins
Mr Catts went above and beyond to handle my complicated case. The level of professionalism is second to none. The staff and Mr. Catts were kind, courteous, and listened to my concerns with compassion. I would recomend this firm to anyone needing legal help. They earned my trust in am amazing way.
Linda Wilson
Mr Catts and his legal team went above and beyond for me. They never stopped pursuing all avenues to get the compensation that I deserved. The staff was courteous and showed compassion. I felt like they really cared about my injuries. I highly recommend their services to anyone
Tatiana Sida-Amor
I was recommended to this law office by my doctor after my car accident in the summer of 2021. I ended up working with Mr. Catts. I appreciate how forthcoming and hardworking he was about my case. The office is extremely professional to ensure that I got the best settlement that I could get. The open communication eased my mind and allowed me to handle things I needed to for myself. Definitely recommend them if you want lawyers that give you results.
Kathyjo Mays
I recommend them highly and have referred them to many of my friends and family. Very informative and def kept me up to date about my case. Schmittinger & Rodriguez def worked very hard for me.
Mary Zober
The staff is friendly and makes you feel comfortable. The firm worked on getting my settlement and kept me informed every step of the way.
Sharonda goode
Great experience! Doug Catts, Ryan and Ms. Kaye are awesome to work with. Very professional, friendly & knowledgeable. They are expensive. But get the job done & in a timely manner. I use Mr. Catts for all my legal needs.
Hot Box237
I will recommend this lawyer to any one, I feel like crying. He is kind, patient and a good listener. He solved your problem and at the end advice you. Thank you very much.
Cheryl Rowe
Doug is personable...assertive and he will get the job done!
Patsy Ware
Schmittinger and Rodriquez attorney Doug Catts is the best, I highly recommend him. As an attorney he is forthright, honest, transparent and sincere. Doug Catts and his staff are amazing.

What Kinds Of Slip and Fall Claims Do You Handle?

Our slip and fall attorneys have years of experience and have handled a wide range of personal injury claims that arise out of falls including:

    1. Slip and fall accidents on wet or slippery surfaces, such as spills, leaks, or icy sidewalks.

    2. Trip and fall accidents caused by uneven or broken flooring, sidewalks, or stairs.

    3. Falls caused by inadequate lighting or lack of handrails.

    4. Injuries caused by falling objects, such as merchandise or debris.

This list is not exhaustive. There are many ways you could be injured on someone’s property as a result of negligence. A slip-and-fall attorney is best educated to evaluate your case and how to proceed under the law.

What Kinds of Premises Liability Claims Do You Handle?

Severe injuries suffered on another’s property is a type of personal injury claim our attorneys have decades of experience handling. These include:

    1. Dog bites or other animal attacks on someone else’s property

    2. Swimming pool accidents, including drownings or near-drownings

    3. Injuries caused by fires, explosions, or other hazardous conditions on someone else’s property

    4. Assaults or robberies due to inadequate security measures

Whether you have a slip and fall case or a premises liability claim, the attorneys at Schmittinger & Rodriguez have the skill and experience to recover the money you are entitled to for your injuries from the property owner responsible for your injuries. Your best bet, when injured, is to retain an attorney who can recover for you the fair compensation you deserve.

What Should I Do If I Have Suffered A Slip and Fall or Premises Liability Injury?

If you have suffered a slip and fall or premises liability injury in Delaware, here are some steps you should immediately take:

    1. Seek medical attention immediately, even if your injuries seem minor. Not every injury is immediately apparent so you want to get medical care and follow-up appointments with doctors.

    2. Report the incident to the property owner or manager and ask for a written record of the incident from the owner, the police, and/or other first responders.

    3. Gather as much evidence as possible, such as photos of the hazard or dangerous conditions; obtain the contact information of any witnesses; and names of any person who took a report. You also want to maintain any relevant documents, such as medical records or lost wage statements that will be used as proof of damages.

    4. Do not give a recorded statement or sign any documents, especially from any insurance company, without consulting with a slip and fall lawyer or an experienced personal injury attorney. The insurance company will do anything to try and make your case go away.

    5. Contact a skilled Delaware fall lawyer who has experience in handling slip and fall and premises liability cases. A slip-and-fall lawyer can evaluate your case, explain your legal options, and help you pursue the compensation you deserve.

    6. Follow your doctor’s instructions and attend all necessary medical appointments to ensure your injuries are properly documented.

    7. Keep track of all expenses related to your injury, such as medical bills, lost wages, and property damage.

    8. Do not discuss your case with anyone, especially an insurance company, other than with your fall attorney. In addition, make no social media posts regarding the incident or your injuries as a post can be used against you in court at trial.

By taking these steps, you can protect your legal rights and increase your chances of obtaining a favorable outcome in your slip and fall or premises liability case.

Who Can Be Held Liable For Damages in Slip And Fall Or Premises Liability Case?

In a slip and fall or premises liability case in Delaware, liability may be imposed on various parties, including:

    1. Property owners

    2. Property managers

    3. Contractors or maintenance companies responsible for maintaining the property

    4. Tenants or occupants who caused the hazardous condition

    5. Government entities responsible for maintaining public properties, such as sidewalks or parks.

Determining who is liable for your injuries will depend on the specific circumstances of your case. A slip-and-fall attorney will investigate the incident and identify all potentially liable parties. It is important to note that Delaware operates under a comparative negligence standard, which means that your recovery may be reduced in proportion to your own fault in causing the injury. Therefore, it is crucial to work with a knowledgeable fall attorney who can help build a strong case on your behalf and maximize your potential recovery.

How Much Money Can I Collect?

The amount of money you can collect in a slip and fall or premises liability case in Delaware will depend on several factors, including:

    1. The severity of your injuries and the impact they have had on your life

    2. The amount of your medical expenses and lost wages

    3. The liability of the parties involved in the incident

    4. The strength of your case based on the facts and evidence

Generally, damages in a slip and fall or premises liability case may include:

    • Compensation for medical bills

    • Recovery of lost wages

    • Money for pain and suffering

    • Punitive damages may also be available in cases involving particularly egregious behavior

While there are no guarantees in any legal case, the amount of compensation you ultimately receive may be influenced by various factors outside of your control. While the fall accident may have been traumatic, there are many legal elements to a slip-and-fall accident. This is why experienced Delaware fall lawyers are essential to the potential value of your case. They know what it takes to maximize your recovery.

Why Schmittinger & Rodriguez
Is Right For You

At Schmittinger & Rodriguez, we understand how stressful it can be to deal with serious injury arising out of a slip and fall. It’s a traumatic, emotional, and financially difficult time with mounting medical bills, time away from work, and time spent recovering. This impacts you and your family’s daily life.

Our team has decades of combined experience handling personal injury law, and we know how to effectively deal with insurance companies to ensure that our clients get the compensation they deserve. We also have a deep understanding of Delaware law and will provide dedicated legal representation throughout your case. Our experienced attorneys are committed to providing you with personalized attention and will fight hard to get you the best possible outcome for your case. If you or someone you love has been injured in a slip and fall or premises liability case, contact Schmittinger & Rodriguez today for a free consultation so that we can help you obtain justice and fair compensation for your losses. YOUR CASE. OUR PRIORITY.

Premise Liability FAQs

How can I prove that a property owner was negligent in a slip and fall case?

You must show that the property owner knew or should have known about the hazard, had a duty to address it, and failed to take reasonable steps to do so. Evidence can include witness testimony, surveillance footage, and maintenance records.

What damages can I recover in a slip and fall case in Delaware?

You may be able to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages related to your injuries.

Can I still recover damages if I was partially at fault for the slip and fall accident?

Yes, Delaware follows a modified comparative negligence rule, which means that you can still recover damages as long as you were not more than 50% at fault for the accident.

Can I file a premises liability lawsuit if I am injured by a criminal act on someone else's property?

In some cases, property owners may be liable for injuries caused by criminal acts if they failed to provide adequate security or warning of potential dangers.

How can I prove that a property owner was aware of a dangerous condition on their property in a premises liability case?

Evidence can include prior complaints from other individuals, maintenance records, and witness testimony.

Can I recover damages for emotional distress in a premises liability case?

Yes, you may be able to recover damages for emotional distress if it can be linked to the incident and the property owner's negligence.

What should I do if I am injured by a defective product on someone else's property?

You may be able to file a product liability lawsuit against the manufacturer or seller of the defective product.

Can I still file a lawsuit if I signed a waiver or release before the accident occurred?

It depends on the specific circumstances and the language of the waiver or release. Consult with an experienced attorney to determine your legal options.

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