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Slips, Trips and Falls

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A slip, trip or fall can occur to anyone, anywhere and much of the time, no one else is to blame. However, sometimes, a person slips, trips or falls because of someone else’s carelessness. If the slip, trip or fall results in injury, it may be possible to seek compensation.

Some examples of common slips, trip or falls that may be compensable if they result in injury are:

  • slipping on ice cream that has spilled from a customer’s tray onto the floor of a food court in a shopping centre;
  • tripping on a cracked tile, one edge of which is raised above the level of the rest of the floor in an office building;
  • falling down a flight of concrete stairs that are wet, slippery and badly lit in a hotel.

Where a risk is obvious, the duty of the person responsible to warn or protect against that risk is greatly reduced. Warnings should be given about hidden risks where it is reasonable to do so.  In assessing whether a person should have done something to reduce or remove a risk, what was reasonable or practical to be done about the risk must be considered and compared with the size of the risk.  A person is usually not liable for very small or remote risks.

In order to sue a person or entity for damage arising from a slip, trip or fall, it must be shown that the risk of someone slipping, tripping or falling was foreseeable and that it would have been reasonable for the person responsible for the area where the fall occurred to take action to prevent the risk. 

It is important that you seek independent legal advice at the earliest opportunity after your injury so that we can advise you about these limitation periods, the assessment process for injury claims in your state and to make sure your interests and rights are protected.

See more information on steps to making a public liability claim.