Tagged: liability

Slip and Falls in Louisiana

Slip and Fall in Louisiana

In Louisiana, Rain can Make it Easier for You to Slip and Fall if Property Owners Don’t Maintain their Businesses

It rains in Louisiana year-round and while the rain keeps the sugar cane growing, it can sometimes result in injuries for you or someone you know.

Remember to take extra precaution during rainy days and know what you and property owners are responsible for when it’s raining. Caution is required from both sides or slip and fall injuries may be the result.

How Rainy Days Create the Perfect Storm for Slip and Fall Injuries

Frequent rainfall can lead to dangerous walking conditions in Louisiana. Your normal day at the grocery store could lead to an injury if you are not cautious and the store doesn’t take appropriate precautions.

1_01-slipandfall-rainWith Louisiana being prone to flooding and water build up in low areas, it is important to watch your step when walking outside. Potholes, uneven stairs, and cracked sidewalks can all be hidden or forgotten when it’s raining. Remember to tread carefully when it’s raining to avoid an accident.

Walking indoors can be just as dangerous. Water is tracked into stores and businesses regularly during downpours. With wet shoes and dripping umbrellas, floors can easily become a hazard. Be careful when walking on slippery, wet floors.

Responsibility to Prevent a Slip and Fall Accident

Avoiding a slip and fall accident is a joint effort from both you and the owner of the property you are on.

You have a responsibility to avoid obvious dangers that can put you at risk for injury. For example, if you see that a floor is wet, you cannot purposely walk through the wet area and expect it to be the property owner’s fault when you are injured. If you see a wet floor and decide to walk through it then you accept the risks and outcomes that may occur as a result of your decision. You must act as a reasonable, prudent person and avoid putting yourself at risk.

Steps for preventing slip and fall accidentsA property owner’s responsibility comes in when addressing the maintenance of the property. Landowners are expected to keep their property in good shape and to fix problems that could cause injuries. Stores and restaurants should also take active measures to protect their patrons from falling on a wet or slippery surface.

Louisiana law on this subject states that a property owner is responsible for damage caused by his or her property if it is a result of neglect. If the owner of a property knows or should have known about a broken step or loose handrail and refused to fix it, then they will likely be responsible for any resulting injuries.

During the rainy Louisiana days, remember to be extra careful when walking so you avoid a slip and fall accident. If you do slip and fall and believe the property owner is at fault, call Scott T. Gegenheimer. He will help you get the compensation you need to heal from your injuries.


This site is intended purely as a resource guide for educational and informational purposes and is not intended to provide specific legal advice. Any information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a professional attorney in your state. The use and receipt of the information offered on this site is not intended to create, nor does it create, an attorney-client relationship. The content of an e-mail sent to Scott T. Gegenheimer Attorney at Law or any of its attorneys will not create an attorney-client relationship and will not be treated as confidential.

Common Slip and Fall Causes

Slip and Fall Causes

It happens to everyone, we trip on a foreign substance or slip on a wet floor, and most of the time we recover with nothing more than embarrassment or a small bump. Sometimes however, the trip or slip and fall causes us to receive injuries far worse than a minor bump. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 800,000 people a year end up hospitalized because of a fall injury. Often, slip and fall incidents stem from similar causes and may even have been avoided if the proper maintenance was followed.

The Common Slip and Fall Causes

Building Code Violations

Homes and company buildings must meet specific code requirements to be considered safe for people to use. A common cause of a trip and fall accident is a staircase not meeting regulations in height standards. The International Council Code states that the optimum height increase for stairs is between four and seven inches, any more or less can result in an injury due to unusual heights. The stair treads and risers should also be the same.

Other surfaces within a building, such as uneven or loose flooring, may also cause you to slip and fall. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, requires ground surfaces, including floors, to be stable, firm, and slip-resistant in residential property. The United States Department of Labor keeps work areas safe with regulation 1910.22(a)(3) stating, “Walking-working surfaces are maintained free of hazards such as sharp or protruding objects, loose boards, corrosion, leaks, spills, snow, and ice.”

1-01-SlipandFall_RootsLiftingSidewalkUnsafe Walking Areas

Property owners have a responsibility to maintain their property both inside and out. Doorways, hallways, sidewalks, and lawns need to be taken care of in order to prevent a dangerous situation to others. As stated in the United States Department of Labor regulation, walkways and store aisles need to be kept free of hazards. Weather conditions are not an acceptable excuse for dangerous walkways. Property owners who fail to make surfaces safe increase the risk of causing an injury to someone on their property. Property owners must create slip-resistant surfaces while it’s raining to prevent slips and falls.

Another aspect of keeping safe walking areas safe is proper lighting. Without enough light in an area, people have little chance to spot dangers or even choose to avoid dangers such as holes, uneven surfaces, or obstacles. While the requirement changes for different areas, the USDOL demands that workspaces such as offices have a minimum of 30 lumens per square foot. One lumen is the amount of a light a single candle gives to a one-foot square that is one foot away.

Rain can cause unsafe walking conditions. Other Causes

You may also find more unusual instances to be the cause of a slip and fall accident. Elevators not aligning with their designated floors or tree roots lifting sidewalks may cause someone to trip and receive a painful injury. In these instances, if the owner of the property failed to warn you of the potential hazard or should have known about the unsafe condition and failed to fix the problem, then they could be responsible for your injury.

When a slip and fall accident is caused by one of these more common reasons, it is likely you are not at fault and could receive compensation for your injury. If you slip and fall because of uneven stairs or walkways, slippery surfaces due to weather conditions, poor lighting, or a more unusual reason, you may not have to pay for your injury yourself. Call Scott T. Gegenheimer today if you were injured during a slip and fall accident for a free consultation.


This site is intended purely as a resource guide for educational and informational purposes and is not intended to provide specific legal advice. Any information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a professional attorney in your state. The use and receipt of the information offered on this site is not intended to create, nor does it create, an attorney-client relationship. The content of an e-mail sent to Scott T. Gegenheimer Attorney at Law or any of its attorneys will not create an attorney-client relationship and will not be treated as confidential.

Slip and Fall Due to Poor Lighting

Slip and Fall from inadequate lighting

The simple things, such as level ground, dry surfaces, and adequate lighting ensure that we won’t trip or sustain a slip and fall. While it may seem extremely simple and even obvious, many times they are overlooked. We often end up falling and injuring ourselves on these dangers that are improperly designed, improperly constructed, or not maintained.

Poor visibility due to inadequate lighting is one of the common reasons slip and fall accidents occur. If you do have an accident because of poor design and inadequate lighting you may even be entitled to compensation for your injuries.

Slip and Fall Accidents are Often Caused by Poor Lighting

Poor lighting can hide obstacles. How lighting Causes Slip and Fall Accidents

Lighting can make in impact in how you navigate the area. When there is poor lighting, you may trip over something you would normally see if there was actually enough light. With adequate lighting, you would notice the last step in the stairway or the obstacle in the middle of the office. When you trip over avoidable obstacles due to poor lighting, the business owner may be responsible.

Lighting can protect you from other hazardous conditions. A hole in the ground or obstacle on the floor could still be dangerous even with adequate lighting. The poor lighting gives you almost no chance to spot the danger. It also prevents you from deciding if you want to take the risk of confronting the hazard at all. In each instance, lighting causes unsafe conditions and may be the reason you trip or slip and fall.

Lighting Requirements

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration of the United States Department of Labor requires work areas to have minimum illumination amounts for the safety of employees. Offices and first aid areas require a minimum of 30 foot-candles, which is defined as “the light level at a distance of one foot away from a standard unit candle.” General construction plants and shops require 10 foot-candles and exits and stairways require at least five. These minimums must be met for employees, guests, clients and customers to prevent unsafe working conditions.

Common Areas with Inadequate LightingSlip and fall accidents occur in hallways with poor lighting.

  • Stairwells
  • Hallways
  • Parking lots
  • Bathrooms
  • Pool areas
  • Mall shopping centers
  • Stadiums

What Happens when there is Not Adequate Lighting

When companies or employers fail to provide adequate lighting which then causes an employee or customer to trip, the injured person can file a negligent claim against the company for the state of the working conditions. The company whose working conditions were not up to OSHA’s standards may be responsible for the injuries of the employee or customer. The injured may be able to receive compensation for loss of wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering. It is the property owner’s duty to keep the premises well-lit according to OSHA’s standards to prevent people from receiving injuries, failure to do so can even result in punitive damages.

If you tripped or slipped and fell and received injuries on a property due to inadequate lighting you could be entitled to compensation for the damages you received. Contacting an attorney right away and preserving evidence will be your top priority after getting treatment for your injuries. Many property owners will not fairly settle a claim without legal representation so contacting an attorney is extremely important when dealing with a slip and fall injury. Contact Scott Gegenheimer today for a consultation about the injury you received due to the poor lighting conditions in or around any buildings.


This site is intended purely as a resource guide for educational and informational purposes and is not intended to provide specific legal advice. Any information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a professional attorney in your state. The use and receipt of the information offered on this site is not intended to create, nor does it create, an attorney-client relationship. The content of an e-mail sent to Scott T. Gegenheimer Attorney at Law or any of its attorneys will not create an attorney-client relationship and will not be treated as confidential.

Liability for Slip and Fall Accidents

1-01_Gegenheimer-Blog-slipAndFall_header

When you enter a business or place of residence you have the expectation to leave in the same condition that you entered.

Slip and fall accidents are a serious concern and can cause serious injury. Businesses and individuals are obligated to provide a reasonably safe area to others. If an incident does occur and you are injured, you’ll need to know if it was caused by the other person’s negligence or if it was something that was a normal part of life.

Providing a Safe Premises

Businesses and individuals that open their property up to the public have an obligation to provide a safe environment to their guests. They need to take reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of anyone on their property.

This means they cannot ignore problems that are obvious safety concerns and must take steps to fix and warn people of potential injuries. When people know about problems before they encounter them they can decide whether they want to take that risk or not.

The owner of a property that has unsafe conditions could be liable for injuries that occur on the property. If they are liable they will have to compensate the victim for injuries.

1-01_Gegenheimer-Blog-slipAndFall_safeEnvironmentsAct Within Reason

A factor that affects who is liable for an injury after a slip and fall is whether the injured person was acting within reason and with care. If an alert person would’ve noticed the danger and avoided it, or was acting recklessly or was in the area without a reason, then the chances of the building owner being liable is low.

While the owner has an obligation to provide a safe area, you have an obligation to act within reason and with reasonable care. The property owner will not be liable for an injury that was a result of reckless behavior.

When it comes to determining who is liable and whether or not you have a case concerning your personal injury, it is best to consult a lawyer. To get an idea of whether or not you may have a case, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Did the owner of the property cause the danger?
  2. Did the owner of the property know about the danger or was the danger obvious to a reasonable person and did the owner refuse to fix it?
  3. Did the object that caused your injury have a legitimate reason to be in the place that you were injured?
  4. Were there any signs indicating the spot could be dangerous?
  5. Were you distracted or doing something else when you were injured?
  6. Would an alert person have avoided the danger?

There are many factors that go into determining who is liable in situations and a lawyer can help you figure out whether or not you have a claim.


This site is intended purely as a resource guide for educational and informational purposes and is not intended to provide specific legal advice. Any information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a professional attorney in your state. The use and receipt of the information offered on this site is not intended to create, nor does it create, an attorney-client relationship. The content of an e-mail sent to Scott T. Gegenheimer Attorney at Law or any of its attorneys will not create an attorney-client relationship and will not be treated as confidential.