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St. Helena Parish Slip and Fall Lawyer

Anything from a loose board to a freshly-waxed floor might lead to a severe injury. If a property owner had reason to know of the unsafe condition and failed to fix or warn visitors about such a hazardous condition, they may be liable for any injuries that occur.

If you slipped and injured yourself while visiting someone else’s property, a seasoned personal injury attorney may be able to assist you in obtaining monetary compensation. To learn about your legal options, contact a St. Helena Parish slip and fall lawyer.

Conditions That May Lead to a Fall

The factors that cause a slip and fall accident can vary from one case to another. A St. Helena Parish attorney familiar with slip and fall cases can investigate a case to determine the potential cause of a fall and—if the investigation demonstrates the property owner is at fault—assist an injury victim with pursuing compensation. Common hazardous conditions that have been known to cause slip and fall accidents include:

  • Unmarked wet floors
  • Spilled food
  • Broken stairs
  • Stairs not built to code
  • Poorly-lit parking lots
  • Uneven carpet
  • Loose electrical cords

Steps in a Slip and Fall Lawsuit

In some cases, accomplished attorneys may settle a slip and fall claim privately before taking a lawsuit to court. However, if the parties cannot agree on a settlement, a plaintiff must file a lawsuit to seek compensation.

Petition

A lawsuit starts with a petition—a document which notifies the defendant they are being sued, identifies the parties in the lawsuit, and establishes the basic facts on how the fall occurred and who was responsible. The plaintiff is responsible for filing and serving a copy of the petition on the defendant.

In response, the defendant next files an answer to the petition, admitting or denying each allegation from the plaintiff. Under Louisiana law, a defendant must file an answer with 15 days of service, but they may request additional time to respond from the court under certain circumstances.

Discovery

The discovery phase begins after both parties file their initial pleadings. During discovery, both parties have the opportunity to learn about the strength of the opposing side’s case.

Parties share documents through written requests, and questions are answered directly during depositions. Attorneys in a slip and fall accident may ask for statements from both parties, witnesses to the fall, or medical experts. This phase can last for an extended period of time, depending on the complexity of the case.

Pre-Trial Motions

Some cases may require pre-trial motions. These motions may be heard early in the case or hours before a trial is scheduled to start, depending on the situation. Common pre-trial motions include:

  • Motions to dismiss
  • Motions to compel answers to discovery
  • Motions to continue the trial
  • Motions for summary judgment

Trial

Once discovery is closed, and the court rules on any pre-trial motions, it is time for trial. In most cases, a jury decides the outcome. Once both sides put on their evidence, the jury retires and makes a decision. If they find in favor of the plaintiff, the jury also determines the amount of appropriate damages. A skilled St. Helena slip and fall lawyer can guide an injured party through this complex and daunting process.

How a St. Helena Parish Slip and Fall Attorney Can Help

Taking a slip and fall case from petition through trial can be difficult. Property owners and their insurance companies may have more resources at their disposal to fight a lawsuit, so it may be in your best interest to seek legal help with your case. If you recently injured yourself in a trip and fall accident, call a St. Helena Parish slip and fall lawyer as soon as possible.