Fancy Sidewalks Cause Real Injuries

It’s not out of the ordinary these days to see granite or marble sidewalks outside of some of Manhattan’s more luxurious buildings. But while such walkways may be aesthetically pleasing, they also present numerous safety hazards. Not only do these “distinctive” sidewalks present safety concerns, but they also make premise liability cases extremely difficult.

Yes, granite or marble sidewalks can jazz up the exterior of a building, but they can often present dangers that your typical concrete sidewalk may not. For instance, when it rains, you will see that surfaces made of granite and marble become far more slippery than those made of concrete. Because one is often more prone to slip and fall on such surfaces, property owners may be responsible for putting down mats during poor weather conditions.

As you can see, just like your average concrete sidewalk, property owners are liable for maintaining those jazzy granite and marble walkways. What do I mean by the phrase maintain? Well, just like concrete walkways,”distinctive” sidewalks must be even and smooth (free of an excessive bumps, ditches, or cracks), must safely transition into any adjacent pathways, and must have a minimum coefficient of friction that allows for non-slip walking.

It can often be hard to prove that a property owner has been negligent. Often, lawyers must hire engineers in order to test the sidewalk to see if it meets standards of safety. Many cases have been won and lost based on such examinations. Therefore, slip and fall cases often become extremely complicated and difficult.

However, if neglect on behalf of property owners can be proven, then they may be liable for any resulting slip and fall accidents that occur. I have seen many such accidents lead to serious injuries. Accident victims who have suffered injuries as the result of a property owner’s negligence are entitled to full compensation for the injuries that they may have sustained. At Goldstein & Bashner, we have worked with many slip and fall victims and have helped them to attain the compensation that they deserve. If you have sustained injuries as the result of a slip and fall accident please contact us.   

Slipping and Sliding On Snow Isn’t A Breeze Of A Case

When the winter time rolls around and there is a snowfall I always hear the same thing. “Hey man it’s snowing out there ,that’s good for business, right”? Well actually not really. I mean yes people slip and fall in the snow and yes some of the injuries involved are very serious. I get calls from clients with broken hips, broken legs, and all kinds of sprains and strains. Sounds good huh? Not really..When I get that call from the client who just slipped and fell in the snow I get ill. I know that these cases are very,very, very difficult. These are not the typical slip and fall cases. These are the real tough babies that only a few daring (and sometimes stupid)lawyers will handle. Now don’t get me wrong I have taken some snow and ice slip and fall cases. But, for the most part, I have kicked myself for taking most of those cases. Take for instance the case of the woman who came to us with her slip and fall on snow and ice case in The Bronx. I took the case into the office as the client very credible and she had a decent injury. If memory serves me right she had a fracture.  This case in which the plaintiff had a minor fracture generated a  350 page motion by the defendants to dismiss the case,which we won. Keep in mind that the case only settled for $25,000.00. Was it worth all the work? I guess each lawyer has to decide that in his own. If you slipped and fell in the snow you will have no case unless the following can be shown: 1) At the time that you slipped and fell it had stopped snowing. 2) In the case of a private property owner there was at least 24-48 hours between the time the snow had stopped and the accident happened. 3) In the case of a municipality there was at least 3 days between the time the snow had stopped and the accident happened. We take a very limited number of these cases and even then we screw up and take a case which we shouldn’t and we pay the price as seen in the above case in The Bronx. In fact in that case we had to hire a weather expert, and probably put in close to 50 hours in opposing the defendants motion to dismiss. Was it worth the $25,000.00 settlement? I will leave that up to others.Remember  a problem with the white stuff won’t always be easy to handle so contact us

Falling Here May Not Be Such An Easy Case

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She Wasn’t Drunk But The Beer Did Her In

Our client who worked in the insurance and real estate industry was a patron at a dance club in Island Park New York. She went with a male friend for what she thought would be a fun evening. The club she attended is still in Island Park. It is considered an upscale dance club as well as an established catering facility for weddings. On the evening in question the client claims that she and her friend got to the club and they split up as he met some of his friends and she went to the outside deck of the facility. Later that evening after meeting a few people and dancing a few times she slipped and fell and badly fractured her ankle. She was hospitalized and was required to undergo surgery which resulted in an internal fixation.

When she came to our office I had real doubts about the case. She said that slipped on a spilled bottle of beer. She claimed that the bottle had been on the floor for about an hour or so. She indicated that although the bouncers all helped her right afterwards there was no accident report. She also claimed that she left on her own accord, tried to drive home on her own to The Bronx, and oh yes she was not drunk. There were just too many tough issues in the case. But a few things started to change my mind. First and most important I met her. I did not have her interviewed by a paralegal or an investigator . I sat with her for several hours. I found her to be very credible. She spoke well, had a very good job and had never brought a legal case before. At that point I thought it was worth a shot. When I got the hospital records there was no sign that she had any alcohol on her breath. When we decided to litigate the case I knew that she might be held with some comparative fault for having observed the spilled beer an hour or so before the accident. However that did not stop me as the club had a responsibility to make sure that the dance area,which is where the spilled beer was. In my office we make it a regular practice to go out to the scene of the accident(sometimes we need a court order)with the client to go over the details of the accident. When we went the client was quite confident and knew exactly what happened. For me that made me feel we had a good shot at getting her compensation. I believed her claims and I thought a jury would as well.

The case was brought in The Bronx, as that was where she lived. While I will go into the different counties on another post lets just say The Bronx is a good place to bring a legal claim. At her deposition the client testified very well. The defendants knew that and that convinced them to have a mediation in the case which ultimately resolved her case. The client had suffered a fractured ankle with an internal fixation. She lost some time from work but not a lot. The case settled between $100,000-$300,000 which made the client very happy. Considering all the pros and cons of the case this was considered an excellent settlement. The point of the case is that sometimes a client comes in and at first it does not sound like a good case at all but after really interviewing the client and investigating the matter you may see things very differently. If you fell in a night club, bar or restaurant contact my firm for more information.

This has to be kept clean

You Want To Sue For What ?..When The Treadmill Takes Off

Today I got a call about a potential new matter. The mom was calling about her 22-year-old daughter (I’m still not sure why the 22-year-old could not call) who goes to college here in New York City. She said that her daughter while in the dorm was using the treadmill and fell off sustaining some pretty bad injuries. Ok. Good injuries. So I begin to ask how did she fall? What caused the fall? There was silence on the other end of the phone. After a few moments she answered by asking me a question “What do you mean what caused her to fall”? So I knew where we were going here. In fact nobody knew what caused her to fall off the treadmill. I explained to the mom “You must have some negligence to bring a claim against somebody”. We get calls all the time from people who say they were hurt…and thats it. For them it does not matter how it happened only that it did happen. For competent and ethical personal injury lawyers it’s about both. You need to have negligence and an injury to bring a case. Each lawyer must decide how difficult or easy  the theory of negligence must be and how valuable the injury must be before they take the case. The point to the treadmill story is simple. If the mom had said “my daughter fell from the treadmill because it would not stop after pressing the stop button” or “my daughter fell because the floor where the treadmill was placed by the college was uneven thereby tipping the treadmill” or even “my daughter fell off the treadmill because the treads were torn” it might have been something to look into. I’m not saying there would have been a case but it would have been enough for some lawyers to investigate. Remember just because you trip or slip and fall doesn’t mean there was negligence. If you call a lawyer you better be able to articulate some reason for the fall other than your own negligence. If you call me without any explanation of somebody’s negligence then your going to hear me say “You want to sue for what”? Feel free to visit our website and contact us if you would like to discuss you slip or trip case.

What The #$*@ Is A Trip and Fall Lawyer?

Somewhere around the third year of  law school(I was forced by poverty to work during the day and go to school at night which meant 4 years instead of the normal 3) my classmates would often ask “What kind of law are you going into”? Well nearly everybody I knew said they wanted to go into commercial law, tax law, corporate law or some high end law field. When it was my turn to answer the question I pretty much knew what I was going to do. I was already working for one of the busiest personal injury firms in New York City and it was pretty interesting to me. Of course I didn’t want to say I’m going into the personal injury field. That seemed so little next to those other answers. So I said “Torts”. That seemed much more dignified. In fact there was a course in law school called “Torts”. How bad could that sound. Well I am a “Tort” lawyer but in my twenty years of practice I have never(and I mean never)heard one personal injury lawyer refer to himself/herself as a “Tort Lawyer”.

My practice consists of many types of “Torts”. At this point I’m just going to refer to myself as an accident lawyer. As an accident lawyer I handle many types of accident like car accidents, construction accidents, and even railroad accidents. But there are many cases in my office that we call the slip and falls. When we want to be lawyerly we refer to these cases as premises liability matters,like the “Tort Lawyer” answer I gave in law school. Let’s call these cases what it is: trip,slip and fall accidents. In essence, these are cases where people are injured on somebody’s property because of some negligent condition or defective problem in the area.

To be clear these cases have resulted in some very serious injuries to my clients. In fact I have made millions of dollars for my clients because of injuries that have resulted in fractures requiring surgery, internal injuries and even brain injuries. It seems that these type of cases have gotten a bad rap among the public and even other personal injury lawyers. Maybe the idea of somebody tripping or slipping and falling and then filing a lawsuit seems inconsistent. If you trip or slip its your fault,right? Well Its my intention to bring you the most up to date cases,claims and decisions that I believe will help you understand why I think these cases are very important. Please respond to my posts in any manner you like.

Is the condition of this property ok with you?

New York Slips and Trips

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