Visitor Question

Back Injury After Falling from a Ladder While Working…

Submitted By: Kai (Virginia)

I currently do garage door work so I travel all around to fix doors. Just recently I was working a spring repair job for a marina. The shop owner moved some boat engines out of the way for me to access the door. There was oil left on the ground that he failed to clean up.

I was carrying a hundred and thirty pound spring system up the ladder and slipped and fell from six feet to the ground because I stepped in the oil before climbing the ladder.

The shop worker came in after the fall but did not witness the accident happen. My back has been hurting and I have not gone to the doctor because I can’t afford it. I took the liberty of taking pictures of the oil on the ground beside the ladder with my footprint in it before they cleaned it up.

The owner didn’t offer an apology and was not very sympathetic. Do I have a case against the shop so I can get my back checked out?

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Kai,

Whether you have a case or not will depend on several factors. The primary one is the extent and type of your injuries. Although you say you can’t afford to see a doctor, you will have to at a minimum go to a local clinic or county emergency room. Filing a claim without any medically verifiable injuries will be an exercise in futility.

To pursue a claim for your injuries and resulting medical bills you will need to contact the owners or managers of the marina and ask them for the name of their insurance company. Regrettably, they may not be as cooperative as you would like.

They may refuse to give the name of their insurance company.

If they do surprise you and give you the name and telephone number of their insurance company, contact the company immediately and tell tem you want to file a claim.

Once you do your case will be assigned to a Claims Adjuster. She will commence an investigation of the case. You will again run into the problem of having nothing to rely upon when speaking with the adjuster. She will want to take your recorded statement. Let her. It’s standard operating procedure. But you can’t just tell her your back hurts. It’s not enough.

She will then speak with her insured, the owner of the marina.

That may be well and good, but the case will eventually come down to what you want. What are you asking them to do? You can’t be asking them to pay your medical bill because you don’t have any. You don’t even know if you suffered any injuries other than a sore back.

You really have to find out if you are injured, and you really have to do so before filing a claim. In the State of Virginia there is a 2 years Statute of Limitations, or “time period” to either settle your claim or file a lawsuit. So there isn’t any rush to settle your case.

If you really are injured you have to see a doctor! Otherwise no one but you will know if you are really injured.

Learn more here: Slip and Falls at Work

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney.

Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call 888-972-0892.

We wish you the best with your claim,


Leave a Comment

Don’t ask a personal injury question here – comments are not reviewed by an attorney. Ask your question on this page. Required fields are marked *