Statute of Limitations for a Sidewalk Slip and Fall

Statute of Limitations

It may come as a surprise to hear just how prevalent slip and fall injuries are in everyday life. 

Slip and fall accidents can occur nearly anywhere—at home, while out shopping, or even at work. In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, of the 2.8 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses reported by private employers in 2018, 27% of cases were the result of falls, slips, and trips. 

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries due to a slip and fall incident, you may be wondering what you can do. Fortunately, you don’t have to navigate the aftermath of your accident alone. 

A qualified and experienced premises liability and personal injury attorney can help you fight for your rights and pursue compensation against the at-fault parties. However, be wary of the applicable statute of limitations for your case. 

Not sure what a statute of limitations is or how it can impact your slip and fall action? Use our guide below to learn more. Then, contact the lawyers at Henderson Law to see how we can help you start the pathway to recovery today. 

First Things First—What Is a Slip and Fall?

As the phrase implies, a slip and fall accident is a personal injury action where someone slips or trips and falls, resulting in bodily injuries.

Slip and fall accidents often fall under a broader legal category called premises liability. In a premises liability action, the injured party falls while on someone else’s property. The property owner must have exhibited negligence in protecting their visitor from a hazardous condition for premises liability to apply. If so, the injured party can bring a lawsuit against the negligent property owner. 

For instance, a sidewalk slip and fall accident may occur in front of someone’s home or a store. Suppose the homeowner or business owner knows they have a cracked sidewalk that could cause someone to trip and hurt themselves. Further, suppose they fail to fix the hazard, block off the area, or warn pedestrians. In this case, the owner might be liable under premises liability law.

Who Can I Hold Responsible for My Slip and Fall Injuries? 

Wrongful or negligent parties in premises liability slip and fall actions might include: 

  • Homeowners who fail to disclose a hazard on the property that they knew or should have known about;  
  • Construction contractors who leave equipment or other dangerous materials out; 
  • Supermarkets or retail stores whose employees fail to properly mop wet floors or keep walkways clear of other hazards; and 
  • In some cases, the government directly, if you fell while on government property. 

This list is not exhaustive. No matter what the case may be, if you suffer injuries in a slip and fall accident due to the negligent actions of another, you may have a legal claim for relief. 

Recoverable Damages in a Slip and Fall Action

Slip and fall accidents can result in serious injuries, both physical and emotional. Often, these types of accidents result in substantial medical costs and other out-of-pocket expenses. 

A slip and fall action allows you to seek damages—i.e., monetary compensation—from the responsible party. Examples of recoverable damages typically include: 

  • Past and future medical expenses 
  • Rehabilitation services; 
  • Lost wages; 
  • Loss of future earnings; 
  • Therapy costs; 
  • Prescription drugs; and 
  • Pain and suffering damages. 

Of course, no amount of financial compensation can undo the harm you’ve suffered. But it can certainly go a long way toward holding the responsible parties accountable and helping you pay the bills that have piled up as a result of the injury. 

Statute of Limitations for a Sidewalk Slip and Fall: What You Need to Know

Before filing your slip and fall lawsuit, make sure you are familiar with the statute of limitations.

Statute of Limitations Definition  

Even if you have a valid slip and fall claim, it’s important to remember that you don’t have forever to file your lawsuit. This is because of the statute of limitations. 

A statute of limitations is a law that denotes a legal timeframe within which a claimant must file a lawsuit. A statute of limitations can range from months to years, depending on the type of legal action at issue.

However, failure to file your lawsuit within the applicable statute of limitations time period can result in severe consequences. Specifically, if you don’t bring your legal action on time, you may lose your right to seek compensation for your injuries entirely. So be sure to speak with an attorney as soon as possible after your injury to determine many things—including how much time you have to file your lawsuit.

What Is the Statute of Limitations for a Slip and Fall Accident in California? 

The statute of limitations for personal injury actions in the State of California is two years. This includes slip and fall cases. This law means that you must file your legal claim within two years from the date of your injury, or your claim is forever barred. 

Notably, however, there are a few exceptions to this rule. 

For example, in some cases, your injury may not be immediately noticeable or recognizable for some reason. In these situations, you may have one year from the date you actually discovered the injury. 

However, if your personal injury claim is against the government, you will have only six months from the date of injury to file an administrative claim. 

There may also be other exceptions that apply to your particular case. If you have questions about the applicable statute of limitations for your case, please don’t hesitate to contact our team. 

Contact Henderson Law

Navigating a slip and fall accident claim can be time-consuming and emotionally draining. That’s why you deserve to have a qualified and compassionate team in your corner to make the process feel as smooth and painless as possible. 

At Henderson Law, we have more than 25 years of experience fighting for injury victims. In fact, our office prides itself on exclusively representing injured clients and their families. Thus, when you hire us, you can feel confident knowing that you have an experienced team of professionals on your side. Contact Henderson Law today to discuss your case and see how we can help.

We’ve helped countless clients recover valuable compensation, and we hope we have the opportunity to help you too. Give us a call today to discuss your case and see how we can help you.