Slipped and fell while shoveling the day after a snowstorm...

by Damaris
(Lowell, MA)

A tenant suffered a slip and fall injury back in February 2013. They now suffer chronic pain from a slipped disk in the neck and lower back.

If the slip and fall happened the afternoon of the day following a huge snowstorm, and the fall was due to no salt being provided by the landlord, who is at fault? The tenant was shoveling to be able to get to work the following day. Can the tenant sue the landlord? What can be done? Thank you.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Slipped and fell while shoveling the day after a snowstorm...":

Damaris (Lowell, MA):

From the facts you present, the landlord appears to be liable for the tenant's injuries and resulting damages. Damages can include the tenant's medical and therapy bills, out-of-pocket expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

If the fall had occurred at or about the time of the snowstorm, and the landlord didn't have a reasonable amount of time to salt or otherwise clear the snow, then the landlord might not be liable.

In the case you present, the snowstorm happened the day before the slip and fall occurred. Moreover, the landlord wholly failed to salt the area upon which the tenant fell. Worse, the tenant was clearing the snow himself or herself.

The landlord should turn the matter over to his or her insurance company. The insurance company will deal with the tenant's claim (if filed). They will do what they can to minimize the amount of compensation paid.

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,

Judge Calisi

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