Can I claim slip on pavement compensation for a slip and fall on private property?
Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor
Editor in Chief
Provided that your slip and fall on the pavement was the result of third party negligence, it should be possible to claim slip on pavement compensation. Most claims for slip on pavement compensation are made against the local authority for failing to maintain a safe pavement or against a utility company for digging up the pavement and failing to return it to a safe and usable state. However a claim for a slip on the pavement is certainly also possible if the slip and fall occurred on private land, under certain circumstances.
The most common reason for making a pavement slip claim for a slip and fall on private property is when the slip and fall occurs outside a shop, supermarket or other place of business which is located on private land and accessible to the public. Any property which allows public access owes its visitors a duty of care to ensure that they can use the premises without being placed at an excessive risk of injury.
Just as the local authority must ensure that the pavements and pathways are maintained to a high standard, the same rules apply to private land owners. A failure to maintain the pavement is a failure in a duty of care and negligence on the part of the land owner. If you are injured in a slip and fall as a direct result of that negligence, you will be entitled to claim slip on pavement compensation against the land owner’s public liability insurance policy. It is strongly recommended however that you speak with a personal injury solicitor for legal advice about making a claim for slip on pavement compensation.
You must first establish that the land owner had created or ignored the presence of a hazard which caused you to slip, had failed to maintain the pavement to allow visitors to the property to do so safely, or that any reasonable individual would have known that a hazard existed and would have taken action to correct it in an appropriate time frame.
If you slipped on the pavement in the grounds of a shop or supermarket or other public building, you should make sure a record is made of the accident in the relevant accident book. The land owner must be notified of the slip and fall if a claim for slip on pavement compensation is to be made. You must also have sought medical attention for your injuries, either by visiting a hospital or a doctor’s surgery. Your medical records must detail any injury which is to be included in a slip on pavement claim.
Although slip on pavement compensation can be claimed against a land owner for a slip at a private residence, pavement slip injury claims of this nature can be more complicated. In these cases, although a duty of care exists to ensure that visitors can do so safely, whether you are able to claim compensation for a slip on the pavement may also depend on whether you were in your rights to be on private land at the time. It may be necessary to first establish that you were not trespassing, and a personal injury solicitor should be consulted in these scenarios to determine whether you have a valid claim for slip on pavement compensation.