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It happens every day – someone trips on steps, falls on an unexpected obstacle or slips on a wet surface. It’s like an unlikely set of circumstances to cause a serious injury but it happens all too often. We’ve heard about it happening to others, but we’re often unprepared when it happens to us. Our first instinct is to lessen our embarrassment at the mishap and go on about our business.

But sometimes our injuries linger, requiring medical attention, causing us to miss work and creating a real problem in our lives. Serious financial straits can be the result of an accidental slip-and-fall injury, which can put a burden on your life. If you’re injured on someone’s property, whether it’s a trusted friend or a local business, here is what you need to know.

1. Inform the Owner of the Extent of Your Injuries

As soon as you trip, fall, slip or otherwise become injured, let the property owner know what’s happened. Too many people let little mishaps slide to begin with, only to pay a price for it later. If for no other reason, you ought to report an injury to protect others. They could be unaware of their right to pursue reimbursement and may suffer because of that. How would you feel if someone else came along and was injured badly if you had the chance to speak up and alert the owner of the situation?

2. Keep Track of All Expenses

As soon as you realize you need medical attention, start tracking your expenses. Keep receipts for your copayments, make a log of missed work and track treatments and medicines you pay for along the way. Often, you can present these reasonable charges to a responsible property owner and they will issue you repayment. If not, at least you will have an accurate record when you negotiate a settlement or take the matter to court.

3. Protect Yourself

If you get nowhere with the property owner, it’s time to seek legal representation. A qualified Orange County Personal Injury Lawyer can issue letters on your behalf to try to get the property owner to make things right. If they continue to be uncooperative, the lawyer can negotiate a fair settlement for your injuries with the insurance property who covers the property or with the property owner himself. Occasionally, these cases have to go to court to find justice. In this event, a lawyer is your best chance to win the case.

Few people actually want to be troublemakers or make money on a simple injury. However, if you’ve been financially burdened or unjustly treated after becoming hurt on someone else’s property, it’s well within reason to get compensated for it. When you’ve documented the charges from the beginning, the process is easier, faster and results in a fair settlement at the end.

Image via Flickr by Metro Centric