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Liability for Falls on Ice & Snow

Winter months (early December to mid-March) bring snow and ice to the Connecticut area, and the coldest month is often January when temperatures average in the low twenties to mid-thirties. Poor weather conditions, including snow and ice, are among the leading causes of slip-and-fall accidents.

Property owners owe legal visitors, patrons, and guests on their property a duty of care and should take steps to address slip and fall hazards, including ice and snow. If you or a loved one slip and fall on snow or ice, you can pursue legal action for your damages. Slip and falls on ice or snow can lead to a variety of injuries, such as:

  • Bruises (especially on vulnerable parts of the body like the elbow and lower back)
  • Lacerations
  • Broken or fractured bones (especially in the limbs, hand, and/or wrist)
  • Dislocated patella or kneecaps
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Traumatic brain injuries

Types of Property Owners

Property owners should make sure this driveways, walkways, parking lots, porches, steps, and other outdoor areas are clear of snow and ice. Whether they take time to shovel snow or lay down salt to clear ice, they should protect their guests from potential injury. If they know of a hazardous area, they should also warn their guests or post signs about the tripping hazard.

There are multiple types of property owners. The most common types include:

  • Residential property owners (i.e. condos, duplexes, townhomes, homes, and other buildings that are privately owned)
  • Commercial establishment owners (i.e. hotels, retail stores, apartment complexes, etc.)
  • Government-owned properties (i.e. post offices, motor vehicle department buildings, tax offices, courthouses, and other buildings run by the federal, state, or local governments)

If you slip and fall on snow and ice, you should take note of your location. Government and commercial property managers may have forms that you can complete to report the incident, and there are special considerations in cases made against the state.

Establishing Property Owner Negligence

When bringing a premises liability suit forward, you have the burden of proof and must clearly establish that:

  • The property owner knew about or should have known about the snow and ice hazards on the property.
  • The property owner failed to address the issue.
  • The property owner’s negligence is the direct cause of your injuries.
  • You have suffered injuries and damages.

Evidence to Support a Claim

To support your claim, you will need strong evidence. Slip and fall accident case evidence can include (but is not limited to):

  • Medical and/or chiropractic bills
  • Receipts for prescriptions, bandages, crutches, and other accident-related expenses
  • Photographs and videos of injuries, property damage, and the scene of the accident
  • Witness statements
  • Tax records or W-2s (to establish lost wages)

Consult with Our Firm

The attorneys at Zayas Law Firm have over 45 years of collective legal experience, and we have dedicated our practice to handling personal injury cases. If you have suffered injuries in a slip and fall accident this winter, our attorneys can help you establish liability, collect evidence, and handle the case legalities. We can also help you calculate your economic and non-economic damages to better ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.

Learn more about how we can help you by calling (860) 854-9156 or completing our online contact form.

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