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Do I Have a Case if I Slip and Fall in a Hospital?

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Many slip and fall cases happen in commercial establishments or private homes, are entitled to compensation if you slip and fall in a hospital? The answer is that you are entitled, but your attorney will need to decide whether to pursue the claim as ordinary negligence or as specifically medical malpractice. This blog will explain the difference between the two. If you recently were injured at a hospital, please get in touch with an Essex County slip and fall lawyer. We’ll be able to explain your options in detail and we will fight hard to get the compensation you deserve.

When a Slip and Fall is Ordinary or Simple Negligence

Ordinary negligence, also called simple negligence or premises liability, applies when someone is injured on property owned or managed by someone else. Keeping in mind exceptions like trespassers or thieves, people generally owe a duty of care to those they allow on their property. If a visitor gets injured due to a hazard the owner or manager knew or should have known about, the visitor may be entitled to compensation for an injury caused by negligence.

This applies as much to hospitals as to anywhere else. In New Jersey, however, the maximum you can receive in damages from a nonprofit corporation set up to provide medical care is $250,000.

Patients and visitors may be injured in hospitals in many ways. For example, a cord stretched across the hall carelessly or cracked flooring in the patient rooms can both cause a slip and fall. If your lawyer can prove that the hospital was negligent, that its negligence created or facilitated a hazardous condition that was not removed, and no or inadequate warning was given, you may receive monetary compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.

Medical Malpractice after a Hospital Slip and Fall

There may be other circumstances when instead of a premises liability claim, a medical malpractice claim may be more appropriate. This may happen when your injury was less due to a dangerous hazard than inappropriate medical care. If your doctor doesn’t assess you correctly as a fall risk or if you are incorrectly administered medication that affects your balance, you might have a medical malpractice claim.

Comparative Negligence in Hospital Slip and Falls

The final wrinkle affecting your claim would be if the court determines that you were partially or totally at fault for your injury due to your own negligence. Called the doctrine of comparative negligence, your recovery will be reduced by whatever percentage of responsibility you share for the accident. Hence, if you are more than 50% at fault, you will not be allowed to recover.

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