I have had numerous clients calling me this past few weeks asking me about potential cases in which ice and snow caused either a slip and fall or a car accident. Specifically in relation to slip and fall cases, the actual configuration and appearance of the snow and ice on which you slipped can make a huge difference. There is a doctrine called the “hills and ridges doctrine” which can limit your ability to pursue a slip and fall claim due to ice or snow. It is quite complicated and many attorneys don't fully understand it. It is a simpler case if the ice on which a victim has slipped is the result of run off that has melted and frozen repeatedly.
These are generally very difficult cases and therefore, due to the complexities and expense of pursuing the claims, an attorney is more likely to accept the case if there has been a serious injury such as a fracture or closed head injury caused by concussion. Some inexperienced lawyers will accept a slip and fall on ice claim only to realize later in the process that it is not a good case from the standpoint of what we call “liability”. Liability is the first hoop the lawyer must jumpt through to prove the case. Unfortunately, even if there is severe injury, your lawyer does you no favor by accepting a case in which you will ultimately lose because there is no legal liability.
Do not go to an inexperienced lawyer who may unknowingly accept your case, then have to tell you six months later you do not have a good case at all! Get a proper evaluation of your case by someone who knows what they are doing and is fully aware of all the pitfalls of these cases. And do not hire a lawyer who only tells you what you want to hear-it can lead to terrible disappointment later! I tell you the truth, not what you want to hear. Of course, I love telling you what you want to hear when it is TRUE!
For more information on Slip and Fall Accidents visit the Worthington Law Group website.