Cut my face on low hanging branch...
(Pebroke Pines, Florida)
I was walking from the parking lot to enter a Walmart. While crossing the street, I checked for traffic. When I turned to cross the street, my face struck a low lying tree branch. I received a laceration above my right eye. I continued to the store with a customer, who took me to a cashier, who took me to the security office.
While applying pressure to the wound, I was instructed that I would need stitches and an ambulance was dispatched. Upon arrival to the emergency room, I received 6 stitches above my right eye and was told by the doctor that another inch lower and I could have had permanent damage.
Is this grounds for a personal injury case? What do I do? Whose responsibility was the low hanging tree branch? I'm at a loss for how to continue here. Thanks for any information you can give.
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ANSWER for "Cut my face on low hanging branch...":
Robert (Pebroke Pines, Florida):
Your injury was quite serious. Moreover, you have important documentation verifying the injury and subsequent medical treatment. This provides an important unbroken link between the injury and emergency medical treatment.
While the injury could have been much more serious, thankfully it was not. However, it is important to know whether or not the stitches and the laceration will leave a permanent scar. If so, you may have the basis of a substantial personal injury claim.
Seek the advice and counsel of a personal injury attorney. Because of the strong link between the injury and medical treatment, your attorney won't have a problem with an insurance company which would otherwise contend your injury occurred as a result of another separate and unrelated event.
The next issue is who may be liable. To determine which entity may be liable for your injuries will require your locating the property owner. To do so, ask the manager of the WalMart if the tree is located on Walmart property. The manager may or may not know.
If so, ask for the name and address of the Walmart corporate division which handles injuries on Walmart property. You can then communicate with them in an effort to have your medical bills and related costs of the injury paid.
Alternatively, contact the Broward County Property Tax Department. There you will be able to locate the owner of the property by researching tax records.
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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