In winter, snow-laden roofs and treetops fill the landscape as bundled-up Utah citizens walk around their cities. Winter is beautiful but also one of the most dangerous seasons due to hazards like icy sidewalks. Icy sidewalks cause unassuming pedestrians to slip and fall, leading to serious injuries. When unsafe sidewalks cause injuries, it’s understandable that you’d want to hold someone accountable for not maintaining the premises.
While you may be unaware of who can be held liable for a slip-and-fall on an icy sidewalk, it is possible to sue for slipping on ice in Utah in some cases. Pursuing compensation for a slip-and-fall like this can be tricky, but a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer can guide you through filing your claim. Reach out to the legal professionals at Feller & Wendt to learn more about your legal options.
Can You Sue for Slipping on Ice in Utah?
If you slipped on ice because the property owner failed to take reasonable precautions to keep the premises safe, you may be able to sue for damages in Utah. Property owners owe lawful visitors a duty of care, so they are responsible for maintaining safe premises for their visitors.
Property owners who neglect to take reasonable precautions to keep the premises safe and prevent accidents become liable for the visitor’s accident injuries.
Suing Utah Property Owners for Slipping on Ice on Private Property
The law generally does not require property owners to remove ice that accumulates around their buildings. However, if there is excessive ice, the owner may be held liable for a slip-and-fall accident.
For privately owned sidewalks and paths, it may be reasonable to expect residential or commercial property owners to check for or remove dangerous ice as well. Both parties owe their invitees the duty to take reasonable measures to maintain the walkways safe, even though the law considers business visitors slightly differently than residential guests.
Taking Legal Action Against Local Government for Slipping on Ice
Since public sidewalks are often owned and maintained by the local government, property owners are typically not held liable for injuries that occur on them. The government may be held liable for damages brought on by negligence, such as failing to salt sidewalks or neglecting to create a plan to remove snow and ice.
For these circumstances, you can file a lawsuit, but you’ll need to take some extra measures to sue the local government. You must first submit a claim to your insurance provider, provide proof of your injuries, and gather all necessary medical records. Then, submit a notice of claim to the concerned government body. When you file this notice, the government typically has three to six months to respond to your claim for damages resulting from an icy sidewalk injury. You may then submit a lawsuit against that particular government entity for your injury damages if the government refuses to react, settle, or accept responsibility for your harm.
The Statute of Limitations for Slip-And-Fall Claims in Utah
Established in Utah Code section 78B-2-307, you have four years to file a civil lawsuit in Utah’s courts seeking compensation for virtually all damage claims resulting from slip-and-fall accidents. According to Utah Code section 78B-2-305, any lawsuit filed for the repair or replacement of personal property that was damaged during the slip-and-fall but did not cause any injuries must be filed within three years.
This time limit will apply to any case involving injuries brought on by egregiously dangerous property conditions, and it begins to run on the day of the slip-and-fall. If you don’t file your slip-and-fall lawsuit before the deadline has passed, the property owner will likely petition the court to dismiss the case, and the court will most likely agree.
Let an Experienced Utah Personal Injury Lawyer Evaluate Your Slip-And-Fall Case
Even without a clear-cut guideline, property owners must take reasonable steps to ensure their premises are free of hazards that could cause someone to get hurt in a slip-and-fall. Slips and falls, especially on ice, can be more harmful than one might expect, potentially resulting in broken bones or head injuries. Consider discussing your options for recovering damages with an experienced personal injury lawyer.
For many years, the personal injury lawyers at Feller & Wendt have helped clients recover fair compensation for slip-and-fall accident injuries. We are a top-rated firm that has recovered substantial payouts for clients across Utah using our aggressive case litigation skills. To learn more about your legal options, schedule an initial consultation by calling (801) 499-5060 or submitting our contact form.