Most everyone has been visiting a friend or family member when they noticed a hazard on their property, such as loose carpeting or missing railing on stairs. Or, in worse situation, many people have actually been hurt while visiting someone, suffering a serious injury as a result. The unusual and socially awkward situation brings up the question as to when you should tell a homeowner or property controller about your accident and injury on their property.
As a general rule, the sooner you can notify them about your accident, the better. You will need to file a premises liability claim in the future — you technically have up to four years after your accident to file in Florida due to the state’s statute of limitations on personal injury claims. There is not much room to make your argument if no one but you knows about your accident, though.
By telling the homeowner about your accident as soon as you can, you clearly establish the beginning of your claim’s timeline, i.e. when you got hurt, where, and why. You also help remove any suspicion responding insurance companies might have about your case. When people do not report an accident soon after it occurs, it makes it seem as if there might be hidden or unspoken information about the accident. An insurance company may be eager to misconstrue the situation to make it seem like you made up the accident entirely.
With all of this said, it is clear that your best bet is speaking up soon after your accident. However, be warned that you should take photographs or video of the location immediately as well. Dishonest property owners may try to immediately fix the hazard — like cementing in loose brickwork — right after you tell them in hopes they can cover it up and escape liability later.
For honest and knowledgeable legal assistance with your premises liability claim, rely on Attorney Wes Pittman of The Pittman Firm, P.A. He has more than 30 years of experience working with personal injury clients who have been seriously injured due to the negligence of others. Get his legal team in your corner for your case by calling (850) 764-0383 today.