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Who is responsible for a slip and fall accident in Massachusetts?

Anyone who has frequented a business has likely seen the bright yellow signs some business owners or managers use to warn people about a potential hazard, such as a wet floor. These warnings are an attempt to prevent a slip and fall accident. Unfortunately, some in Massachusetts continue to allow dangerous conditions to exist that could ultimately result in a serious injury.

While some people who have never been injured in such an accident may be quick to dismiss the possibility of such an accident, the fact is that every year people suffer serious, sometimes fatal, injuries during a fall. Some reports indicate that a slip and fall is the most prevalent reason people seek emergency medical treatment. In fact, approximately 17,000 people are killed as a result of falls each year.

In some cases, the only way to hold responsible parties accountable is by pursuing litigation. Depending on the case, the property owner, manager or even cleaning service could be liable for an accident involving a slip and fall. In a personal injury case, it must be proved that certain parties caused the accident, were aware of the dangerous condition and failed to take action, or should have been aware of the condition.

In many cases, a slip and fall accident is easily preventable. For example, simply placing a mat in an area known to become wet and slick when it rains, for example, can save people from a serious injury. If an injured person, or a family member in the event of a fatality, can prove negligence as described above, a Massachusetts civil court could issue an award that would allow the victim to recover damages resulting from the accident.

Source: ehstoday.com, "Slip-and-Fall Accidents: Liability and Prevention Issues", Sandy Smith, June 24, 2015

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