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What do you need to prove in an Illinois slip-and-fall case?

On Behalf of | Apr 5, 2024 | Personal Injury

Slip-and-fall accidents can occur anywhere, from grocery stores and restaurants to sidewalks and parking lots. If you sustain an injury in a slip-and-fall accident, you may wonder what you need to prove to pursue a claim.

In such cases, you must establish key elements to demonstrate liability and recover damages for your injuries.

Establishing negligence

Something you need to prove in a slip-and-fall case is that the property owner or occupier was negligent in maintaining the premises. This involves showing that the property owner knew or should have known about the hazardous condition that caused your fall and failed to take steps to address it. For example, if you slipped on a wet floor in a grocery store, you would need to demonstrate that the store knew about the spill or should have discovered it through routine inspections but failed to clean it up or provide a warning.

Proving causation

In addition to establishing negligence, you will need to prove that the hazardous condition caused your injuries. This typically requires presenting evidence, such as medical records and testimony from health care providers, to demonstrate the extent, cause and nature of your injuries. Proving causation can be challenging. This is especially true if the defendant argues that your injuries were pre-existing or the result of other factors unrelated to the fall.

Documenting damages

You also need to provide evidence of the damages you suffered due to the slip-and-fall accident. This may include medical bills, receipts for out-of-pocket expenses related to your injuries and documentation of lost wages or income. You may need testimony from witnesses or experts. By documenting your damages, you can strengthen your case and increase the likelihood of obtaining fair compensation.

Remember to act promptly when making a slip-and-fall claim, as there are statutes of limitations involved in doing so. Illinois residents typically have two years to file a claim from the date their injury occurred.