How to Claim Compensation for a Slip on a Wet Floor

You can claim public liability compensation when you slip on a wet floor in public places. Learn how to make a successful claim.
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If you slip on a wet floor in Australia, you could claim public liability compensation. However, it’s not easy to make a successful slip-and-fall claim, and doing so requires a comprehensive understanding of your legal rights and next steps. Thankfully, our legal guide helps you know how to win a compensation payout when you have a supermarket fall, a shopping centre accident, or another public place fall.

About Slip and Fall Accidents on Wet Floors

Slip and fall accidents frequently occur on wet floors in public places like supermarkets and shopping centres and from low heights like steps, stairs, and slippery surfaces. In these places, common slip hazards include spilled liquids and polished floors. However, you can also suffer significant injuries from poor lighting obstacles, such as uneven flooring edges, loose mats, and cables, resulting in a fall accident.

Recognising Slip and Fall Hazards

At your local shopping centre, managing slip hazards is a responsibility of shopping centre management. In Australia, they have a legal obligation to keep their customers safe. This duty includes keeping areas clean and free of rubbish and items stored appropriately after use to prevent slips, trips, and falls. For example, avoiding serious injuries can be as simple as placing a piece of cardboard over a piece of fruit lying on the floor.

Common Injuries from Wet Floor Slips

You can suffer a significant injury from a wet floor slip, including:

These common injuries can cause you to take time off work and suffer a loss. Sometimes, more serious injuries can happen, including a fatal slip and fall accident. Hence, depending on the nature and severity of the injuries, victims may be eligible to make a personal injury claim when they have crossed the significant injury threshold.

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What to do After a Slip on a Wet Floor

What should you do immediately after a slip-and-fall accident? First, if you’ve suffered severe injuries, like broken bones or head injuries, call emergency services and seek medical treatment in a hospital. Remember, your treatment records will provide medical evidence for your injury claim.
Second, promptly report the incident to the premises owner or manager so you have a detailed injury report. We also recommend:

• You take pictures and video of the accident scene
• Note any contributing elements, such as wet floors or missing warning signs.

Documenting the Accident Scene

Documenting the accident scene helps establish fault and supports a solid personal injury claim. This step involves:
• Photographic and video evidence
• Recording details about the cause of the fall, such as uneven floors or spills.
The above evidence supports the claim that the building owner or manager did not take reasonable precautions to ensure your safety. Remember that when an accident happens in a public place, the scene may be cleaned quickly. Evidence will be lost, so you must act promptly to have a successful slip-and-fall compensation claim.

Collecting Contact Details of Witnesses

When you are the injured person in a slip and fall accident, witness statements can help you win a public liability claim. So, you must speak with witnesses, collect their contact details, and ask them to provide a detailed statement. Remember, the more detail you have about the incident, the stronger your claim will be.

Your Legal Right to Claim Damages for a Slip Accident

In Australia, civil liability legislation protects your right to claim personal injury damages for a slip-and-fall accident. When a property owner or manager knows of a hazard and fails to remove the risk within a reasonable timeframe, they can be liable for their negligence. This legal responsibility covers all types of public spaces, including:

• Physical stores like shops and supermarkets
• Shopping centres
• City council-owned property like footpaths and car parks
• Landlords of leased spaces like offices, airport terminals, bus stations, etc.
To win a slip-and-fall claim, you must prove that the parties were aware of the slip risk and failed to correct it within a reasonable period.

Duty of Care in Public Places

The fundamental concept for public liability claims is the legal principle of duty of care in public places. Consequently, retailers, building managers, and landlords are responsible for eliminating hazards that could cause people to slip and fall. For example, a wet floor sign should warn of the risk of fall injuries. Additionally, tenants are expected to exercise reasonable care for the safety of their customers.

Defining Reasonable Care

The reasonable care standard applies to personal injury cases when determining liability. According to the information they had or should have had at the time, a reasonable person in the same situation would take what is considered reasonable care.

For legal purposes, reasonable care means being vigilant for potential safety risks, such as wet floor signs, to prevent slip-and-fall accidents. In general, everyone is expected to take reasonable steps to ensure their safety and avoid foreseeable risks of injury in most circumstances.

Proving Negligence After a Slip and Fall Accident

In Australia, you must prove negligence to make a successful slip-and-fall claim. Negligence occurs for a wet floor slip when the responsible party knew or should have known about the dangerous floors and failed to address them. The first step to claiming public liability compensation is identifying the party responsible for safety at the accident location and establishing their responsibility.

Moreover, for a successful lump sum payout, the injured person must also show that the negligent action or inaction caused them a financial loss.

About Contributory Negligence

In Australia, a public liability insurer often seeks to establish contributory negligence when negotiating slip and fall claims. They will try to prove that the injured party’s negligence contributed to their harm. For example, it might be considered contributory negligence if the claimant fails to take reasonable care for their safety, such as by ignoring a visible warning sign.

If contributory negligence is established, the compensation amount will be reduced according to the claimant’s level of fault. Of course, our legal team will seek to reduce or eliminate your contribution so you get the best outcome.

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Can I Make a Public Liability Claim for a Slippery Floor Injury?

In Queensland, there are three essential criteria to be eligible for a public liability claim.

  1. A person must have suffered an injury or damage.
  2. Another party’s negligence must have caused the injury.
  3. The claimant must have suffered a loss as a result of the injury.

To be eligible to make a compensation claim after a slip and fall on a wet floor, the incident must have resulted from someone else’s negligence. Claimants must have suffered financial damage due to the injury to pursue the claim.

At Splatt Lawyers, knowing if you have a valid claim is free. Call 1800 700 125 to speak with our experienced personal injury lawyers now.

How Much is a Slip and Fall Compensation Payout?

People injured in a slip-and-fall accident may also be eligible for a lump sum payment for permanent impairment and common law damages. This compensation payment can include lost earnings, out-of-pocket expenses, medical treatment and rehab costs.

In Australia, compensation settlements are generally based on the extent of injuries and their impact on the injured party’s life, particularly their capacity to earn an income. The compensation payout for a slip-and-fall claim includes “head of damages,” including:

  • Lost income and superannuation
  • Medical expenses
  • Treatment-related travel expenses
  • The cost of domestic assistance
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • Projected future losses

Medical reports will prove the severity of your injury, and medical treatment records will help show the impact on your work capacity and related medical bills. Hence, you must keep all documents related to the incident, as they’re crucial in supporting a compensation claim.

Strict Time Limits Apply to Public Liability Claims

In Australia, the statutory time limit for filing public liability claims, including those for slip-and-fall compensation, is generally three years from the date of the injury. Promptly seeking legal advice after a slip-and-fall accident ensures a case is filed within the statutory time limit.

An extension to the deadline may be granted only in exceptional circumstances. Therefore, acting promptly is crucial to ensuring you don’t miss your chance to make a claim.

Contact our compensation lawyers now to learn about your eligibility. It’s free to know your rights. Call 1800 700 125

Seek Legal Advice for Wet Floor Claims

The outcome of a slip and fall claim is heavily dependent on choosing the best public liability lawyer. Insurers often seek to protect their profits by denying or reducing your payout. Hence, a personal injury law firm with substantial experience in public liability cases ensures that you have legal representation familiar with the challenges of this type of claim.

Thankfully, Splatt Lawyers has been helping Queenslanders achieve justice for three decades. Our experienced lawyers provide 100% no-win, no-fee legal funding, so you have no financial risk in your case. It’s free to know if you have a valid case and your chances of success. Call Now: 1800 700 125

Caution sign to prevent slipping on a wet floor

Wet Floor Slip and Fall Claim FAQs

What happens when you slip and fall on a wet floor?

You can suffer various injuries when you slip and fall on a wet, slippery surface. Common injuries caused by an unexpected fall include:

Often, people who fall or slip on a wet floor hit their heads against hard surfaces, resulting in a concussion or brain trauma.

What are the common hazards for slip and fall accidents on wet floors?

The common causes of slip and fall accidents on wet floors include:

  • Spilled liquids
  • Greasy floors
  • Power cables
  • Inappropriate footwear
  • Low-visibility obstacles like uneven flooring edges and loose mats

What should I do immediately after a slip and fall accident?

After a slip and fall accident, you should:

  1. Seek immediate medical attention
  2. Report the incident to the property owner or manager
  3. Document the accident scene with photos and video
  4. Collect contact details of any witnesses
  5. Contact a reputable personal injury law firm

These steps are crucial for your well-being and any potential future legal action.

How can I prove negligence in a slip and fall case?

To prove negligence in a slip and fall case, you must show that the property owner or manager was aware of the safety risk (or should have been aware of it) and failed to take action within a reasonable timeframe.

How much in an average slip and fall settlement in Australia?

Personal injury claims for slips and falls in Australia typically result in settlements ranging from $15,000 for relatively minor injuries to $500,000 or higher for catastrophic damage.

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