In almost any slip and fall case, the defendant must have notice of what caused the accident. For example, if you slipped on ice, the defendant must have been aware of the ice with sufficient time to clean or clear it. The same holds true for spills. If you slip on water in the store, your Queens Slip And Fall Lawyer should know that to prove your case, the store must have had notice of the spill. The reasoning is that if the defendant was not aware of the spill, how could they be responsible for cleaning it up? There are three basic kinds of ways to prove notice in your case. Each of them are slightly different.2
Actual notice, as you may have guessed from the name, is when the defendant actually knows about the substance or hazard that caused you to fall. Let’s imagine you fell on ice in a driveway. Actual notice is when the personal responsible for that driveway is aware of the ice that made you fall before the accident. This means that your Queens Slip And Fall Lawyer needs to prove that the defendant actually knew about the ice. Sometimes this proof can be hard to come by. Most defendants are not willing to admit that they knew of the hazard which caused the accident. Therefore this evidence may come from witness statements or surveillance video.
The most common way to prove actual notice is through the testimony of the victim. In most slip and fall cases, the victim has been to the property and either knows the owner or, in the case of a business, can easily talk with staff. If the plaintiff has complained to the defendant before about the specific substance which caused the fall, that is actual notice. If a different witness, perhaps another customer complained about the substance before the fall, that too constitutes actual notice.
Constructive Notice is the most common kind of notice. So what does it mean? Constructive notice means that the defendant knew or should have known about the hazard which caused the fall. This is the kind of notice that you get in the vast majority of cases. Let’s look again at our slip on ice in a driveway case. If the defendant in that case did not admit to knowing about that patch of ice specifically, you can still prove your case with constructive notice. You can show constructive notice by proving that the defendant was in the area before the accident and should have known about the ice. For example, if they walked up to the front door from the driveway and the ice was there, they likely should have known about the ice.
This also applies to our store example. If someone fell on a spill in the aisle, the case can still be proven even if the employees didn’t know about the spill. If your Queens Slip And Fall Lawyer can prove that the employees should have known about the spill, then you can win your case. This is most often done by uncovering company cleaning policies. Companies are required to reasonably inspect their properties for hazards. usually, by comparing these polices to surveillance video or testimony of workers, you can find a failure by the defendant. Essentially, most of the time they let the spill sit too long without attending to it. That, in essence, is constructive notice and can help you win your case.
For the most part, there is no getting around notice. However, your Queens Slip And Fall Lawyer must also explore if the defendant created the condition which caused the fall. How is that possible? Let’s look again at our ice on the driveway example. Let’s assume that the owner has gutters positioned in such a way that they caused water to pool on the driveway. In this situation, it is clear that if water is left on the driveway it will freeze in cold weather. Therefore, the defendant created the condition, which means you can win your case.
The same logic can apply to the spill in the grocery store. If an employee spills something on the floor or mops without putting up a sign, they have now created the condition. That creation means that you can win your case, and get over the notice hurdle.
Notice is an issue in every slip and fall case. Your Queens Slip And Fall Lawyer should be focused on how to overcome it immediately,. Thorough investigation and full knowledge of the law are the best ways to get this done.