Iowa City, IA – Slip and fall cases are legal actions taken against a property or business owner for allowing unsafe conditions to injure guests. As a general rule, the defendant in these actions will be liable for the person’s damages if they are shown to be negligent. Negligence cases have the same structure regardless of the type of accident, but premises liability and slip and fall cases are mostly focused on facts about the condition of the property, what actions were taken to keep people safe. Some attorneys in Iowa focus on handling these kinds of issues for injured clients.  

The elements of negligence 

A plaintiff in any negligence case must show a relevant duty of care, a breach of that duty by the defendant, causation, and damages. All four elements must be present for the plaintiff to be successful, which means that even one missing element will result in a judgment for the defendant. In slip and fall cases there tends to be a pattern of behaviors by the property’s maintainers and owners and facts related to the property that can meet these elements. 

Facts about the property

As a general rule any business such as a retail establishment, parking lot, office, grocery store, or other places that expect guests should be maintained in a way that prevents accidents and injuries. This can include general cleaning, checking for hazards and obstacles, and limiting access to dangerous areas. The duty of care imposed on a retail or grocery store for example will normally require them to clean spills and other dangers as soon as they receive notice of the problem.  

Even for properties where guests are generally not expected such as rural lands and farms, the law still imposes certain duties on property owners to minimize the possibility that anyone will be injured. The owner should not simply allow areas to become overgrown or present other kinds of dangers to people and vehicles that pass by, as they may be liable for damages. 

Records of what the property owner did

One of the best ways for a plaintiff to prove their case in a slip and fall accident is to obtain some kind of maintenance records, pictures, and surveillance through the discovery process. This can help show negligence if the property owner did not do things like make repairs or changes if there had been previous accidents or known dangers

More information from a local attorney

Eells and Tronvold Law Offices is a firm that works with clients who need help after various kinds of accidents in Iowa. Their attorneys are available to provide advice and representation throughout the course of a civil case. 

Firm contact info:

Eells and Tronvold Law Offices

1921 51st Street NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402-2400