Sidewalk Fall Accidents in Philadelphia
Last reviewed and updated: October 17, 2019
Sidewalk trip and fall accidents in Philadelphia usually don’t cause any major injuries. But sometimes, a pedestrian can take a nasty tumble and break bone or get a back or head injury. In these cases, an injured pedestrian can get compensated from a property owner: business, government entity or private owner.
A property owner in Philadelphia who is negligent in maintaining sidewalk in front of a home, office or business can be held liable for an injured pedestrian’s fall accident. In order to prevail in these kinds of cases, the injured party has to prove what the nature of the defect was. Precisely what was it about the sidewalk that caused you to fall? This is one of the most critical aspects of fall accident lawsuits in Pennsylvania. Injured parties must be able to clearly identify the defective condition. Therefore, after a fall accident on sidewalk happens, it’s important to take pictures, if possible.
Negligence in a Sidewalk Fall Accident Lawsuit in Philadelphia
Property owners aren’t generally liable for small, minor defects. For instance, an uneven area between two blocks of sidewalk measuring about 1 inch or smaller probably isn’t enough to hold the property owner liable. On the other hand, a tree root that causes buckling of entire sections may be enough. These kinds of cases often boil down to the details, such as where the defective condition existed in relation to the street, lighting, entryways, etc.
PA Law – What’s the Status of the Owner?
Under Pennsylvania injury law, property owners are required to keep their sidewalks in a reasonably safe condition. This doesn’t mean a property owner has to correct every single uneven area or crack in the sidewalk. The key is whether a property owner either knew or should have known of a dangerous condition.
However, the level of care required depends on the status of the property owner, i.e., private individual versus public business. A store owner/business bears more responsibility to maintain sidewalks than a private homeowner does. That’s because stores open to the public are inviting people onto their premises. This implied invitation means that store owners have a duty to inspect their stores, including parking lots and sidewalks, for defective conditions.
Timely Investigation is Important
After a fall accident happens on a sidewalk in Philadelphia, it is very important to consult with a personal injury lawyer who is experienced in investigating these types of cases. It’s critical to document the defective condition as soon as possible and also identify the correct/true owner of the property.
Sidewalk Fall Accidents in Philadelphia – Get Legal Help NOW (215) 985-0777
Contact our Philadelphia personal injury lawyers for a free injury consultation. Our firm handles fall down accidents in Philadelphia and the surrounding counties.