Broken Leg from Slip on Ice in a Parking Lot...
(North Rose, NY, USA)
My uncle lives in a housing complex and on Jan, 19, 2012 at approximately 8:30pm he was walking back to his apartment from the store (approximately 1 mile round trip). He cut across part of the grass that leads into his parking area and then, when he got about 20 feet into the parking area, he slipped and fell on a section of snow covered (a dusting) ice in the parking area. This is a spot that accumulates water.
He has a fracture of the left tibia and a torn meniscus that is going to require surgery after the fracture heals. The maintenance man, manager of the complex and the insurance adjuster (for the complex) all spoke to my uncle and have ALL told him that he should not have been walking across the parking lot. They are refusing to pay any medical bills or be cooperative in any way.
I have spoken to the owner of the complex and he is also uncooperative. He will not answer any of my questions regarding salting of the parking lot or the abusive manner in which the maintenance man spoke to my uncle.
What can we do to get my uncle's injuries paid for? Thanks.
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ANSWER for "Broken Leg from Slip on Ice in a Parking Lot...":
Serena (North Rose, NY, USA):
Unfortunately if you aren't able to get any cooperation from the management or owners of the complex your uncle's only alternative may be to consider filing a lawsuit.
It seems from the facts you present that the claim already went through to the level of insurance company Claims Adjuster. That is a good and bad thing. It is good because it shows the complex took the injury seriously enough to refer it to their insurance company. It's bad because the insurance company claim's adjuster offered nothing.
Before filing a lawsuit you might have your uncle contact the claims adjuster at least one more time. Tell your uncle if he can't convince the adjuster to make a reasonable offer he will consider filing a lawsuit. Now he can't say it unless he means it, but it may be his only option anyway.
Sometimes the threat of a lawsuit is enough to convince the insurance companies to make a reasonable offer. If that doesn't work your uncle will have to consider contacting a personal injury attorney and filing a personal injury lawsuit against the management and owners of the complex.
Most personal injury attorneys will not charge for an initial office consultation. Your uncle should speak with several until such time as he is comfortable with the decision he is going to make.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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