If I am injured at someone’s home as a result of their apparent negligence, what are my rights?

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If I am injured at someone’s home as a result of their apparent negligence, what are my rights?

I recently fell at my in-laws. As a result I have sprained my ankle badly and may be unable to work. I fell due to put my foot down on a floor that they knew to be rotten and had covered with another unsafe, spongy and movable flooring surface. I know my health insurance is unlikely to cover my medical costs and I am worried about missing work.

Asked on October 24, 2011 under Personal Injury, Pennsylvania

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The property owner is liable for your injury.  You could file a personal injury claim with their homeowner's insurance carrier.  Verify that the insurance is accepting liability before incurring huge medical bills. 

When you complete your medical treatment and are released by the doctor, obtain your medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of any wage loss.  Your personal injury claim will consist of these items.  Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering.  Compensation for pain and suffering is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file your lawsuit for negligence against the homeowner.  If the case is settled with the insurance company, NO lawsuit is filed.  If the case is NOT settled, you will need to file your lawsuit for negligence against the homeowner prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.


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