What Are My Rights if I Slip on a Wet or Icy Sidewalk?
Ice, snow and other substances can create slippery conditions on sidewalks, driveways, walkways and stairs. Most property owners have a duty to clear their premises, including stores, parking lots and buildings, of these hazards. If you have slipped or fallen on a wet surface and suffered an injury, you may be able to bring a personal injury case under Oklahoma law.
Your rights after a slip and fall injury depend on the circumstances of your accident. One of the primary factors considered by a court is your status on the land. Under Oklahoma law, different people are entitled to different levels of care by a property owner.
People who are on the property for business purposes are generally considered invitees. This means that the property owner has a duty to keep the sidewalk or stairway in reasonably safe condition. It may be possible to hold them liable for any dangers they knew or should have known about.
Those who visit for noncommercial reasons, such as social guests, are considered licensees. Property owners must disclose nonobvious dangers to people in this category. A “wet floor” sign might be enough to fulfill this duty.
Trespassers are usually only protected from intentional harm. This means that a trespasser may not be able to obtain compensation for slipping on a wet floor unless the floor was intentionally made wet with the intent of making that person slip.
In the case of a wet or slippery surface, a property owner may be expected to clean up the mess, put down salt, or put up a warning sign, depending on the situation.
With the help of an experienced premises liability attorney, an invitee or licensee may be able to prove that the property owner’s negligence led to their injuries. Those who have been injured may be entitled to compensation for their medical expenses, their lost wages and, in some cases, their pain and suffering.
If you or someone you love has suffered an injury from a fall in the Oklahoma City area, the experienced legal team at Ryan Bisher Ryan & Simons is here to help. Contact us today to arrange your free initial consultation.