What You Should Know About a Slip-And-Fall on Ice, Snow, or Slush

Slip-and-fall accidents may result from untreated ice, snow, and slush accumulating on parking lots, walkways, stairs, and porches, which may lead to injuries that last long after the last bit of snow has melted. While many people blame weather-related slip-and-falls that occur in icy or snowy conditions on nature, truthfully, these accidents are often avoidable. Property owners (private and public) are responsible for maintaining safe conditions on exterior walking surfaces to protect employees, customers, and guests. 

People injured due to a slip-and-fall accident due to snow, ice, or slush that has accumulated on a business, private, or public property may recover compensation through a slip-and-fall claim. The attorneys at Knutson + Casey will help determine the best way to prove your injuries resulted from a property owner’s negligence and assess the value of your claim. We’ve helped thousands of clients across Southern Minnesota, and we want to fight for you, too. 

What Responsibilities Do Property Owners Have in Slip-And-Fall Accidents Due to Snow, Ice, or Slush?

People on private or commercial property have the right to expect the property to be reasonably safe. Businesses extend an implied invitation to customers when they open the door to their businesses. Guests of private residents also have protection under the law. Failing to maintain weather-related hazards may leave property owners open to being responsible for an accident that occurs and they may be held liable for injuries to customers, guests, and employees.

Under premises liability, a property owner may be found negligent if they don’t immediately address weather-related slipping hazards prior to inviting other people onto their property. Claiming to be unaware of the issue is not a defense against negligence under the law because owners are responsible for regularly inspecting sidewalks, steps, parking lots, and other surfaces in the event of icy conditions before allowing others onto the property.

Although property owners are typically the responsible party in a premises liability case, if the snow or ice removal was contracted out to another party, that party may be considered liable for failing to maintain surfaces properly and be held financially responsible for the victim’s injuries. 

How Can I Recover Damages From a Slip-And-Fall Accident?

While liability insurance is meant to cover the damages incurred by a slip-and-fall accident, it’s not uncommon for insurance companies to challenge the validity of a claim or undervalue a claim. They may refuse to cover all the damages and argue that the claimant is partially responsible for their injuries or that the steps taken by the property owner were sufficient to prevent the slip or fall. Insurance adjusters may also claim that an injury was not due to the slip-and-fall accident at all but instead a pre-existing condition that predates the accident and is unrelated to the claim.

To recover full and fair compensation for damages, the party injured in the slip-and-fall accident must prove the four elements of negligence.

  • The property owner had a duty of care to the injured party.
  • The property owner breached that duty of care through their negligence.
  • That negligence caused the claimant’s injuries.
  • The injuries resulted in damages to the claimant.

An experienced premises liability lawyer will help you file a personal injury lawsuit to recover the compensation you are entitled to. 

Contact an Experienced Slip-And-Fall Accident Attorney Today

While snow, ice, and slush is expected during a Minnesota winter, they shouldn’t be a danger to residents or visitors. Property owners are responsible for ensuring that walkways are safely maintained. Even public sidewalks owned by the government should be properly cleared to ensure the safety of Minnesota residents.

At Knutson + Casey, we combine the power of a large-scale firm with the compassion of a family-operated business. We are dedicated to personalized service, which means we will be with you every step of the way, ensuring that your rights and best interests are protected and prioritized. Contact our firm today by completing our contact form, or call (507) 344-8888 to schedule a consultation.