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Trip Slip & Falls

If you’ve ever tripped or fallen in a public place then you’ve probably noticed that a lot of people are amused by your misfortune, this is because it’s generally considered pretty trivial. However, if your slip, trip or fall results in pain and injury, it’s not trivial at all and you could be entitled to compensation.

If your fall is a result of someone else’s mistake then you’re entitled to pursue them for compensation for your injuries.

Falling in public

If you slip, fall or trip in public and fee that your accident was caused by a public highway being under maintained and left in a dangerous state then your claim should be made to the local council, because the local authority have been responsible for the maintenance of public places since the enactment of the Highways Act 1980.


At the moment, because of several bad winters and a lot of rain, potholes are a huge issue on the UK’s roads and pavements. Because the number of potholes has increased so dramatically, the cost of repairing them has also increased which means that local councils are taking much longer to repair them. This consequently means that they’re much likely to cause people to trip or fall.

The Highways Agency says that you cannot claim compensation for a trip or fall caused by a pothole if they have made reasonable efforts to repair it.

Falling in private

A supermarket or other indoor area is considered a private place and if you slip or fall because of a negligence – such as an unmarked wet floor – then you’re entitled to claim for your suffering.

The Health and Safety Executive has detailed the fact that it is the responsibility of the supermarket, or other private place, to make sure that floors are safe for the public and employees to use. This means that they should follow this advice:

“Ensure cleaning happens at the right time and is carried out in the correct manner, using the right products and equipment for the job. Ensure wet floors signs are always used.

Ensure spillages are cleaned up immediately and the floor is left dry.

It’s easy to trip on damaged floors so, if you spot an area of damage, highlight the damaged area, report it and where possible keep people away.

Ensure cleaners use electrical sockets nearest to where they are working to reduce the risk of tripping.”

Making a successful claim

Just because you’ve been injured doesn’t automatically mean that you’re entitled to compensation. If you want to put forward a claim and be successful then you need to build a good case, which means you’ll need the following:

Evidence – You need to have proof of your accident which means information about whatever caused your fall, photographs and measurements of the area and defect. You should also ensure you collect the details of any witnesses at the time in case they need to be contacted in the future.

Make a complaint – Once the accident has happened you should make an official complaint to the authority that deals with the area. This will ensure there is an official record of your accident, which can be used to build your case.

Medical advice – If you’re injured then it’s essential to seek medical advice as, not only will this decrease your recovery time, it’ll also provide an official report on your injuries.

Reports – You can request information about the condition of a road, how often it’s been inspected and whether a particular defect has been reported before by using a freedom of information request. This information is vital and can help your case significantly. If you can prove that the authority have failed to maintain a road or they have been made aware of the defect previously, then it will be a great effort towards a successful case.

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