The Role of Insurance Companies in Regards to Premises Liability Cases
Interviewer: What is the role of insurance companies in a slip and fall?
Richard Sailer: Usually the owner of a property would have insurance coverage to pay for any injuries or damages that happen in that area. If there is no private ownership of the property, it would fall under the public domain or the government entity to be responsible for any kind of dangerous condition on that property.
Interviewer: What would happen if I slipped and fell in someone else’s house?
Richard Sailer: Your injuries would be covered under their homeowners insurance.
The Role of Insurance in a Slip and Fall at a Commercial Establishment
Interviewer: What insurance would come into play if I fell at a grocery store?
Richard Sailer: If you get injured at a grocery store, there may be 2 insurance companies involved. One of the insurance companies would be for the store itself which would take responsibility depending on what caused the injury, what the defect was, or what the dangerous condition was. Additionally, you may have the landlord’s insurance company being involved as well. A common situation of the landlord’s insurance involvement would be a slip and fall at a store resulting from water dripped onto the floor from a broken air conditioning unit on the roof.
The Landlord’s Insurance May Have to Share the Blame for a Slip and Fall at a Commercial Establishment
Since you’re a customer of the store, you would have a claim against the store and their insurance company. However it’s the landlord property owner who’s responsible for the maintenance of the air conditioning so the store’s insurance company is not going to want to cover it. Because it’s the landlord’s problem, the store’s insurance would pander the claim to the property owner’s insurance company. Often times, the 2 insurance companies will go back and forth to determine who’s responsible. All we have to do is wait until they have sorted out who’s going to pay us.
The Role of Social Media in Premises Liability Cases
Interviewer: Would it be wise for someone to refrain from any social media interactions?
Richard Sailer: The insurance companies are getting a lot more sophisticated in terms of doing research on social media. Additionally, they’re able to access people’s online accounts even when they’re set in private mode sometimes. Consequently, I would definitely recommend that you take caution of what you post online if you have a personal injury lawsuit or a claim pending
Posting Case Related Information on Social Media is Detrimental to the Outcome of a Premises Liability Case
A few years ago, it was not cost effective for an insurance company to hire a private investigator and follow you around with a video camera to try to catch you doing something you shouldn’t be doing. These days, a lot of people are making it easy for the defense and insurance company by providing the videos, photographs, and commentary to help the defense win the case themselves. All it takes is somebody sitting at a computer or phone to pull up somebody’s life history online.
The Online Surveillance of People Has Increased and it is a Cost Effective Method of Procuring Information
Interviewer: Are people hiring individuals to follow someone to determine if their claim is legitimate?
Richard Sailer: I typically don’t see that because it’s usually cost prohibitive under most circumstances. However, surveying someone online is relatively inexpensive and easy to do. There is a lot more online surveillance of people in terms of watching their social media. Therefore, if you claim that you have a back injury and then post a video of yourself waterskiing on your social media account the jury would not turn in your favor.