Are Companies Liable for Icy Sidewalks and Parking Lots

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During the winter months, it’s not uncommon for the weather to result in the formation of a layer of ice over roads and sidewalks, but that doesn’t make it any less of a hazard. While often used as a comedic gag, slipping and falling on a patch of ice is no laughing matter and can result in serious injuries. As such, employees who must maneuver across extremely icy parking lots in order to get to their place of work may be wondering whether their employer is actually responsible for taking care of the situation.

While the answer is most likely yes, the specific details may vary from city to city. In the state of Oregon, such ordinances are implemented by municipalities independent of each other. There are a variety of different factors that could affect the strength of the case. For instance, different cities have different allowances regarding how much time owners are given to address any unsafe conditions on the property.

One important factor across the state is that for such an accident to be considered eligible for workers’ compensation, the negligence regarding the upkeep of sidewalks and parking lots must be intentional or with knowledge. This means that if the property owners were unaware of the hazard, they may not be liable for it. This is an important analysis whether you pursue a worker’s compensation claim or personal injury claim.  If you suspect that the owner may not be aware of a safety issue, it’s important to ensure this information is disclosed as soon as possible, allowing for a swift resolution that can ultimately make everyone safer. In addition, in the event that the owner chooses not to act upon the report, there is no uncertainty regarding whether or not they were aware of the hazard on the property.

Because the particulars of each case can vary, it’s important to have a team of experienced legal professionals with extensive knowledge of local workers’ compensation ordinances. At Shlesinger & deVilleneuve, our attorneys are prepared to go over every step of the process and determine how best to proceed to ensure your needs are taken care of. Contact us today!

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