It’s important to report your slip and fall to the property owner or business as soon as possible after your accident to immediately establish your side of the story. If you delay in reporting the accident, it could give room to the insurance company to contradict your version of events and argue that your injuries had another cause.
If possible, you should also take plenty of photos of the area in which your accident transpired, including photos of the clothing and shoes that you were wearing at the time of the fall and photos of your injuries. It is also a good idea to speak with any bystanders that may have witnessed what happened. Some of them may have coincidentally captured your fall on their phone, some may have noticed the dangerous condition, and some may have observed how your body hit the ground when you fell.
What to Include In Your Accident Report
Depending on where you are when you slip and fall, some premises may have a standard accident report form already on site for you to fill out, while others may not have anything. Regardless of what the property owner provides to you, here are some items that should be included in the accident report:
- The date and time of the accident
- Your name, address, and phone number and name, address, and phone number of the property
- What type of accident it was, such as a slip and fall
- All of the sequences, no matter how mundane, of events that led up to the accident
- What you think caused the accident, such as a slippery floor or poor lighting
- Your description of the accident
- Which foot slipped first
- Whether you hit the ground and/or other objects when you fell
- Which body part hit the ground or other object first, second, and third
- Any injuries you incurred
- How you are feeling currently
- Any damage that was done to the property or equipment nearby, such as all of the cereal boxes falling off the shelf at a grocery store because your arm hit them on your way down to the ground
- Names and contact information of any bystanders that witnessed your slip and fall
- How the negligence of the property owner caused your fall
- If you slipped and fell on government property, then your accident report must also include details such as lost wages, medical costs, medical professionals that you have visited or consulted with, and a diagram of the area in which the accident occurred.
Delaying Can Hurt Your Case
If you delay too long in filing your accident report, the insurance company will argue that you did not take your accident seriously, that you may not have really been injured, and potentially that you have no proof that the accident even occurred, let alone what caused it. Additionally, keep in mind that some injuries caused by your accident may take several days or longer to surface. By filing the accident report in a timely manner, you negate the insurance company’s potential argument that, should you later discover that your injuries are serious, this accident was not the cause.
Do You Need to Sign the Accident Report Right Away?
If you are injured inside a private business or on government property, the property owner may have some sort of form for you to fill out once you inform them of your injury. Here in California, you are not required to sign the report when you submit it. This gives you the opportunity to review the report with a qualified slip and fall attorney to make sure your rights are protected before signing the report. If the property owner refuses to provide you with a copy of the report, then you can snap a photo of it with your phone.
Standing Up for Angelinos Since 1995
An experienced attorney can guide you through this entire process, starting with submitting your accident report and later filing a slip and fall lawsuit if necessary. Since 1995, Salamati Law has built a reputation on standing up for the rights of negligence victims to help them achieve justice.
If you have been injured on someone else’s property, call Salamati Law today to schedule a free case review with a slip and fall lawyer in Los Angeles. No fees unless we recover money on your behalf.