Who is Liable for a Slip and Fall on a Broken Sidewalk?
The City of San Diego contains more than 5‚000 miles of sidewalk that residents and visitors to America’s Finest City use every day. Unfortunately‚ many of those miles of sidewalk are aged‚ cracked‚ buckled‚ crumbling‚ and otherwise in disrepair. A 2014 city report identified over 39‚000 tripping hazards after examining only about one half of San Diego’s sidewalks‚ amounting to an average of over 15 threats to public safety per mile. These conditions pose a serious trip and fall injury hazard‚ particularly to elderly people‚ handicapped people‚ children‚ and those transporting children in strollers. A fall on a hard surface like concrete can result in severe and painful injuries‚ especially in older people and children.
If you have been injured because of a broken or otherwise unsafe sidewalk‚ you may be able to pursue compensation for your injuries. But‚ San Diego’s laws about responsibility for sidewalk maintenance and repair are complex and confusing‚ leaving most people unsure about who can be held liable for injuries caused by sidewalks. If you or a family member has suffered an injury related to poor sidewalk conditions‚ it is vital that you contact an experienced San Diego slip and fall attorney who is familiar with local municipal statutes. Jurewitz Law Group Injury & Accident Lawyers has been successfully representing injury victims since 2000.
For a free consultation‚ call the Jurewitz Law Group Injury & Accident Lawyers at (619) 233-5020 or (888) 233-5020.
Who Is Responsible for San Diego Sidewalk Maintenance and Repair?
According to the City of San Diego’s website‚ the city itself is responsible for repairing sidewalks damaged by vehicle accidents‚ water main breaks‚ grade subsidence‚ and trees within the right-of-way or city owned trees on the parkway (the grassy area between the sidewalk and the street. However‚ normal sidewalk wear and tear or age damage is the responsibility of the property owner or business owner whose property is adjacent to the sidewalk. The property owner or business owner is also responsible for the repair of sidewalk damage resulting from the roots of privately owned trees‚ heavy vehicle traffic‚ and drainage from private property.
The City of San Diego has a cost sharing program where it will split the cost of repairs to sidewalks that are old and deteriorated with property owners‚ 50/50. Of course‚ there are plenty of gray areas regarding liability in sidewalk injuries. For instance‚ many trees on private property were planted by the city.
Why do I need a lawyer?
When hazards or dangerous conditions are not identified and addressed, innocent people could suffer severe or life-altering injuries.
Working with an experienced premises liability attorney is important if you have been injured due to a broken sidewalk, especially if you are suing the city. Determining who is liable can be complicated as the city, a private property owner, or another entity may be responsible for the care of the broken sidewalk that caused your injury.
In addition to your physical pain, you may be facing financial stress due to large medical bills and forced time off of work. Financial compensation is critical in avoiding a total disruption of your life and the lives of your loved ones. Working with an experienced attorney is crucial in holding the negligent party who caused your injuries responsible for their actions.
Why should I choose Jurewitz Law Group Injury & Accident Lawyers?
At Jurewitz Law Group Injury & Accident Lawyers we firmly believe in fighting for the rights of those who call San Diego home. Our team has worked with many clients facing premises liability lawsuits and we understand your pain and stress. Jurewitz Law Group Injury & Accident Lawyers will work tirelessly and aggressively to pursue compensation on your behalf. We will build you a strong case and will handle all the communication with defense lawyers and insurance adjusters. We will accept nothing but full and fair compensation for our clients.
Our firm has built a reputation for success in both our legal ability and our client centered approach. Our team has earned a 10.0 rating from AVVO, an independent group that ranks law firms based on experience, recognition, and conduct.
Our clients have also reaped the benefits of our labor as we have been able to secure compensation for thousands of individuals just like you. We will never accept a low-ball settlement offer from the insurance companies.
Our team has recovered millions of dollars in rulings and settlements for our clients and are fully prepared to take any case to trial if that is what justice demands. We can get the results you need during this unstable and frustrating time in your life.
Compensation for Injuries Sustained on Broken Sidewalk
If you’ve suffered an injury caused by poor sidewalk conditions‚ you may be eligible for compensation for any of the following damages:
- Household and vehicle modifications if needed (wheelchair ramps‚ etc.)
- Lost wages
- Current medical bills
- Future medical bills resulting from your injury
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent injury or disability
- Costs of physical therapy and rehabilitation
- Wrongful death damages in the event that you’ve lost a loved one due to poor sidewalk conditions.
What is a property owner’s duty of care?
In order to hold either the private property owner or the city responsible for your injuries, your attorney must prove that they were negligent. This means that they failed to uphold their duty of care, and that failure led to your injury. A duty of care is an expectation that a property owner maintains reasonable safety standards to protect anyone that may enter a property.
The state requires that property owners do the following:
- Maintain their property
- Inspect their property for any hazards
- Fix any hazards; and/or
- Provide an adequate warning of said hazard
A property owner who falls short of meeting these standards would likely be considered negligent in a court of law. Working with an attorney can ensure that those who are irresponsible in their property maintenance are held accountable for their actions.
How long do I have to file a claim?
If you suffered an injury due to negligent maintenance of a sidewalk, your best option is to contact an attorney right away. Our team at Jurewitz Law Group Injury & Accident Lawyers is well versed in the logistics and timelines of filing any type of lawsuit. If you believe a private property owner is liable for your injuries, you must file a premises liability lawsuit within 2 years of the accident date.
If you believe the city of San Diego is responsible for your injuries, contact an attorney immediately, as the statute of limitations and rules to file are different when the city is involved.
In order to file an injury claim against against the city of San Diego you must complete the following:
- Fill out a Claim Against the City of San Diego form
- Mail the form to the City of San Diego, Risk Management Department, 1200 Third Avenue, Suite 1000, San Diego, CA 92101
- Submit the form within 6 months of your injury
If your claim gets rejected, you have 6 months to refile from the date of rejection. In order to ensure that your claim is properly handled, consult an attorney before taking legal action.
You Need the Best San Diego Broken Sidewalk Slip and Fall Injury Lawyer
As you can see‚ determining liability in a sidewalk injury claim can be tricky. This is why it is so important to have the representation of a knowledgeable San Diego injury attorney. Jurewitz Law Group Injury & Accident Lawyers is familiar with the sidewalk liability laws of municipalities throughout the rest of San Diego County. To get the settlement you deserve‚ call our offices for a free consultation at (619) 233-5020 or (888) 233-5020.