Slip and fall accidents can cause significant injuries, including broken bones, spinal cord injuries, and traumatic brain injuries. When these injuries occur on someone else’s property, an injured person has the right to seek compensation for their medical costs and other losses.

This compensation, also called damages, fits into two main categories:

  • Economic damages, which cover tangible costs associated with your injury
  • Non-economic damages, which cover intangible losses

In some cases, the court may also award punitive damages. However, this only applies when the liable party displays a reckless disregard for safety.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are awarded to compensate an injured person for tangible losses. Economic damages include compensation for:

  • Medical Expenses – Medical expenses are the most common economic loss in personal injury cases. Damages may cover your hospital stay, surgeries, prescriptions, physical therapy, and expected future medical expenses. In short, if it’s necessary for your treatment and you pay for it or receive a bill, it’s a medical expense.
  • Lost Wages – Sometimes, an injury may cause you to miss work while you recover. You may only be able to work in a limited capacity afterward, resulting in lower pay. In some cases, your injuries may be so severe that you’re unable to continue working altogether. The awarding of damages helps offset your loss of income due to your injuries.
  • Property Damage – Occasionally, slip-and-fall accidents also involve property damage. For example, you may have landed on your phone, breaking it. You can seek compensation to cover the repair or replacement of property damaged in the accident.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages compensate you for the intangible things you’ve lost or experienced due to your injury. Some typical losses for which you may recover non-economic damages in slip-and-fall cases include:

  • Pain and Suffering – If your injury results in long-term pain and emotional distress, you may be entitled to pain and suffering compensation. It can be hard to place a dollar value on pain and suffering, but testimony from your treating physician can help.
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life – A severe slip-and-fall injury can impact your life in ways you may not have imagined. If you suffer a spinal injury, you may no longer be able to do the things you once loved.
  • Loss of Consortium – Loss of consortium is different because this is a claim brought by the spouse or partner of the injured party. The purpose of loss of consortium damages is to compensate a spouse for the loss of companionship, affection, and romantic relations. A severe injury can turn a spouse into a full-time caretaker.

Proving Losses After a Slip and Fall Accident

To recover damages, you must first prove you suffered economic and non-economic losses. You can do this by gathering different kinds of evidence, including medical records, bills, pay stubs, witness testimony, and expert testimony.

It’s also a good idea to document your life after your injury by keeping notes on your treatments, healing progress, and pain levels. Photographic evidence of your injuries can also help.

How to Value a Slip and Fall Claim

The value of your slip-and-fall claim will depend on many factors. The two most important factors are the severity of your injury and whether you were partially responsible for your injury.

California follows a comparative fault standard, meaning every party partially responsible for an injury is liable for their part. In a slip and fall case, this could mean that you are partially responsible for your injury, which would lower the value of your claim.

For example, perhaps you slipped in a puddle on the floor of a grocery store. The grocery store is at fault for failing to clean up the puddle. However, if you were running through the aisles, you may be partially at fault, too. As a result, your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Contact Our Walnut Creek Slip and Fall Accident Lawyers

Have you been injured in a slip-and-fall accident in Walnut Creek? If so, the experienced slip-and-fall attorneys at Casper, Meadows, Schwartz, & Cook can help you seek compensation. Contact our law office today for a free consultation.