You should always notify someone if you are injured on property or premises you do not personally own and ask for an incident report to be made. For instance, if you slip and fall on ice, but don’t think you are injured, you should still notify an employee and ask for an incident report to be completed. If you are engaging in activities on someone’s property and are injured because of an another person’s negligence or recklessness, you should report your injury immediately and ask for an incident report to be made. You should always report the incident and ask for the incident to be documented, even in situations where you don’t feel immediate pain or feel like you were injured!
Some things to consider in addition to making a report: First, look to see if there are any witnesses who saw the incident. Ask for their names and contact information, and ask for that information to be put into the report. Make sure you either ask for a copy of the report, or write down the witnesses’ name, contact information, and a description of what they saw. People are generally helpful and are willing to give you information, and eyewitness testimony is crucial in cases involving a premises injury.
Also, take pictures. Take pictures of where you fell or of the item that harmed you. In a fall case, take pictures of any loose debris on the ground, of liquid on the floor, or of untreated ice on a parking lot. In cases where you are injured because of someone else’s negligence, take pictures of the person who harmed you, how you were harmed, and of the general area in which you were harmed. Take pictures of the person making the report and of the report itself. Additionally, open a note-taking app and write down everything you can remember about what happened, being sure to note the location, any witnesses, and anything you think can be helpful in explaining what happened to someone who wasn’t there. Document everything!
Documenting everything is important because one of the main arguments that adjusters and defense attorneys make is that there was no incident report of your injury, and therefore, there’s no proof that their client is responsible for your injury. In nearly every case involving a premises injury, an incident report, eyewitness testimony, or photographs have helped establish that the other side is responsible for your injuries.
Without this proof, it can be very difficult to demonstrate responsibility. Even if the injury occurred a few days ago, it’s still not too late to make a report. Sometimes there is video footage to help support your claim, but many companies delete the footage after a short amount of time. Therefore, do everything you can to notify the other side about what happened on their property and ask them to make a report. Also ask them to preserve all evidence of the incident, including camera footage.
If you’ve been injured on someone’s premises, it’s important for an attorney to start working on your case immediately. The first thing an attorney should do in a premises’ case is demand that any and all evidence of your injury be preserved by the other side. This is especially true if you did not make a report. Should you have any questions about what you should do and what steps you should take to protect your case, don’t hesitate to call our law office.