Common Injuries from Falling Down Stairs

Common Injuries from Falling Down Stairs

Injuries Sustained from Falling Down the Stairs

Elderly woman falling down the stairs.

It’s happened to many of us: You’re exiting a store or taking the stairs at work when you suddenly take a tumble. Sometimes it’s just a small trip, but sometimes falling down stairs can do real damage. 

According to the National Library of Medicine[1], there are on average over 1 million stair-related injuries every year. These injuries can result in pain and suffering, long-term disability, and loss of the ability to work. Unfortunately, falling down the stairs is all too common: the National Safety Council[2] ranks stairway falls second only to motor vehicle accidents as a leading cause of accidental injury in the United States.

If you’ve been injured falling down the stairs and it wasn’t your fault, you may be able to file a lawsuit. Here’s what to do – and how pre-settlement funding can help you. 

Common Injuries from Falling Down Stairs

When it comes to falling down stairs, injuries can vary widely—and can have lasting effects. Here are some of the most common. 

  • Cuts, bruises, sprains, and strains: These are some of the most common injuries from falling down stairs.
  • Fractures and broken bones: Broken wrists, elbows, ankles and knees are all common stair-related injuries. 
  • Spinal breaks: Recovery from breaks to any part of the spine can be arduous and painful. Whether surgery is required or not, people with spinal breaks face months, if not years of rehabilitation.
  • Compressed or Slipped Discs: Stairway falls can cause trauma to the walls of spinal discs, causing them to painfully compress or bulge (“slip”). This can lead to severe pain, numbness, and muscle weakness.
  • Other neck and spine injuries: A complete injury of the spinal cord means that the spinal cord has been severed, which results in paralysis and may also disrupt movement and breathing. An incomplete injury to the spinal cord means that the injured person might retain more sensation and motor function and could improve with rehabilitation.
  • Head injuries: A hard impact to the head can cause coma, bleeding or swelling in the brain, amnesia, and more. After this type of injury, also referred to as a traumatic brain injury or TBI, there may also be long-term issues with mobility, memory, cognition, and behavior. 
  • Internal bleeding: This dangerous condition happens when blood vessels bleed into the body’s cavities. It may not be initially evident but could prove fatal if left untreated. Initial symptoms could be as minor as feeling neck or back pain after a fall, weakness, and dizziness. That’s why it’s always important to seek medical attention after a fall.
  • Nerve damage: Like internal bleeding, nerve damage from falling down the stairs can be difficult to diagnose, but the effects can be devastating. It can cause pain, numbness, tingling, burning, crushing headaches, reduced motor function, unusual clumsiness, and more. Nerve damage can be difficult to treat and long rehabilitation periods are often involved.
  • Whiplash. Whiplash, also referred to as a neck strain or neck sprain, happens when the neck is forced to rapidly move back and forth. While often thought of as a soft-tissue injury, whiplash can also cause long-lasting damage to ligaments and nerves.

Causes of Stairway Accidents

Falling down stairs is caused by a variety of things, including:

  • Ice, snow, and water: Shoveling snow, using rock salt for ice, and quickly clearing away any water from rain or spills are all the responsibility of the property owner.  
  • Loose or damaged surfaces: Cracked wood, stairs with holes, and carpeting or mats that aren’t well-secured, or that are frayed or damaged, are common tripping hazards.
  • Improper construction or maintenance: Stairs that are different heights or that are missing are a serious trip hazard.
  • Missing or broken handrails: If handrails are required and are missing, or if they’re damaged and can’t provide you with proper support, that can cause a fall. 
  • Poor lighting: Falling down stairs is much more likely if the stairway isn’t properly lit. And even if it is, you may still have a claim for slip and fall pre-settlement funding.

Who Is Liable for Falling Down Stairs?

Who is at fault depends on the rule of “premises liability,” which states that property owners must maintain a “reasonably safe environment” for visitors. That means they’re responsible for eliminating hazards and keeping stairways up to code. 

The National Safety Council (NSC) recommends[3] that regular inspections be performed on stairways to prevent unnecessary injuries. In public places such as restaurants and retail stores, this is the responsibility of property owners. At work, it is the responsibility of your employer. Additionally, the NSC recommends preemptive safety measures such as handrails, stair treads, and adequate lighting. 

Filing a Lawsuit After Falling Down the Stairs

What can you do if you’ve been injured due to falling down stairs that should have been better maintained by an employer or property owner? Some tips from a slip and fall lawyer might include the following: 

  • Always seek medical care. Delayed pain after falling down the stairs is not uncommon, and visiting a medical professional as soon as possible ensures you’re properly taken care of—and that you have the medical records you need. 
  • Take pictures and video of the site where you fell. Write down the date and time, location, hazards, and injuries. Also get statements from witnesses if possible. 
  • Call a personal injury attorney to begin your fight for just compensation. They’ll evaluate the evidence, determine if you have a good case and start the process.

Settlements in Stair-Related Falls

Are slip and fall cases hard to win? In personal injury cases like falling down stairs, it gets easier with an experienced attorney. You can typically get compensation for:

  • Expenses for medical care and rehabilitation
  • Lost wages 
  • Pain and suffering (known as non-economic damages)

What Is Pre-Settlement Funding for a Stair-Related Lawsuit?

Personal injury pre-settlement funding is a portion of your expected settlement proceeds that’s given to you before your settlement actually happens. Once you’re paid, the funding company receives its previously agreed-upon portion of the settlement.

How Long Does It Take to Get Pre-Settlement Funding Approval for Falling Down Stairs Injuries?

The application process for pre-settlement funding is easy. Here’s how it works:

  • Apply for a settlement advance over the phone. 
  • We will call you and your attorney. 
  • If approved, they’ll send over a purchase agreement. 
  • When that’s accepted, we’ll then forward you the funds, typically within 24 business days.  

What Are the Requirements for Pre-Settlement Funding Related to Falling Down Stairs?

There are a few criteria you’ll need to fulfill to receive personal injury pre-settlement funding: 

  • You need to be represented by an attorney on a contingency basis. 
  • You need to have a documented injury and a strong claim against the defendant. 
  • You need to have already filed or soon be filing your lawsuit in an applicable court of law.

How Much Money Can You Get from Pre-Settlement Funding After Falling Down Stairs?  

While your pre-settlement funding for a personal injury case will vary based on a number of factors, we provide up to 12.5% of the anticipated value of your case. We will evaluate:

  • Information from your attorney 
  • The strength of the evidence
  • Insurance policy limits
  • Any previous settlement amounts

How USClaims Can Help During Your Stair-Related Lawsuit

If you’ve suffered any of the most common injuries from falling down stairs, it’s easy to fall into debt due to medical bills and lost wages. Pre-settlement funding can help. We have low, simple rates, we cap our fees and we only get paid if you do. Apply now or call us today at 1-877-USCLAIMS to learn more.

Sources

  1. Blazewick, Danielle Herbert, et al. “Stair-Related Injuries Treated in United States Emergency Departments.” The American Journal of Emergency Medicine, vol. 36, no. 4, Apr. 2018, pp. 608–614, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajem.2017.09.034.
  2. ‌“National Safety Council.” Www.nsc.org, www.nsc.org/membership/members-resources/injury-facts. Accessed 12 July 2023.
  3. ‌“National Safety Council.” Www.nsc.org, www.nsc.org/membership/members-resources/injury-facts. Accessed 12 July 2023.
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