“Hey lady!” an odd looking gentleman shouts at a State worker
walking down Broadway. Feeling a bit uneasy, the professionally dressed
female decides to cross the street. “Better safe than sorry,”
she thinks to herself.
As she steps over the curb and onto the rain-moistened street, she sees
that there is no traffic. Two steps into her stride, she plants her foot
in what appears to be a small patch of surface water. In actuality, the
water is nearly ten inches deep and hides a very substantial pothole in
Her right leg unexpectedly descends almost a foot into the hole, and she
falls to the ground in pain. Some onlookers help her up and dust her off.
Her pain is substantial, but she thinks everything is fine. She limps
onward to the pub where she has several friends waiting for her.
Unfortunately, her night out with the girls does not last long. Her foot
is in a lot of pain; she decides to go to the hospital. It is there that
X-rays reveal she has a broken bone in her foot. She will miss a few days
of work and have a cast on her foot for about two months; then she will
need to spend time each week in rehabilitation therapy.
What can this lady do? She has incurred pain and suffering, lost work,
and accumulated medical bills. Can she sue to recover these losses? Does
she have a case?
The roadway is most likely owned and maintained by a governmental entity.
And yes, the
government can be sued under a premises liability theory. Whether or not she has a good case; however, will depend on several factors
unique to governments. In regards to potholes, the government must have
been made aware that the defect was there.
Then, the responsible agency must have had enough time to repair the defect.
The government must be given advance notice of a party’s intention
to sue as well. The procedural aspects of suing the government, and any
other type of party, are complex and should be discussed with an experienced attorney.
Experienced Poughkeepsie slip and fall attorneys know that all property owners have very specific responsibilities in regard
to property maintenance; the government, private property owners, commercial
owners, and the like all have the same duty.
That duty is to keep the property in a reasonably safe condition so that
hazards do not harm guests. The owner must not create the danger. The
owner must inspect the property for hazards. Owners must warn guests about
dangers and even cordon off dangerous areas. In addition, hazards must
be timely repaired.
Slip and falls on sidewalks, roadways, staircases, yards, and the like can each be the
result of negligent property maintenance. Suing the property owner is
a very common way people receive compensation for injuries caused there from.
Learn more about outdoor summer BBQs, pool parties, personal injury and
civil litigation in
our latest article posted here. Read more about injuries occurring at pool parties and who is liable
for injuries in
our blog posted here. Learn more about getting hurt by a drunk driver while coming home from a BBQ in
our blog posted here.
Our personal injury attorneys at
Mainetti, Mainetti, and O’Connor, P.C. have over 100 years of combined experience working with victims of personal
injury accidents throughout New York. We understand how to effectively
represent clients who have been injured in serious car accidents, particularly
throughout the Mid-Hudson Valley region in Kingston, Poughkeepsie, and
Newburgh where we have offices. Hear
what our clients are saying about us here and learn about just some of our
successful results here. If you or a loved one has been injured in a personal injury accident,
please do not hesitate to contact us by calling 845-340-HURT (4878) or
toll free at 866-440-4452, or by using the
convenient contact form here.