We’re coming up on spring and summer, a time when people flock to Florida’s many hotels and resorts. Many of these vacationers are excited for one activity in particular: time at the pool. While pools can be great fun, there are risks.

Accidents such as slips and falls do happen, and they can result in a pretty serious injury. While the law does allow for an injured party to seek compensation, it is not a free for all. A property owner does not automatically owe someone money for an unfortunate outcome.

Causation is crucial

In order to file a successful personal injury lawsuit against a property owner, the injured person has to prove negligence. They have to show the hotel operator was responsible for providing a safe premises, and that their actions (or inaction) directly caused the accident and injury.

For example, if a resort did not have the legally required slip-resistant tiling around the pool, that might be considered negligence. Or if hotel staff repeatedly failed to stop teens from roughhousing in the pool, and a third party was hurt during their horseplay, there may be a case.

Comparative fault

When someone files a personal injury lawsuit for something like a slip and fall, the property owner will frequently try to show the injured party is at least partially to blame for what happened. For example, maybe the property owner failed to clean slick algae off the concrete around the pool, and you slipped. However, maybe you were staring at your phone and walking very quickly.

Under Florida’s comparative fault law, you can still sue and even be awarded compensation, but the amount might be reduced based on how at-fault the jury believes you were.

Premises liability cases are complex

Premises liability cases, such as slip and fall accidents, are often quite complex. The law has different safety standards depending on the exact scenario at hand. Either way, as a victim, it is important to gather as much evidence as possible. That can include:

  • Taking photos of the scene immediately
  • Gathering contact information for witnesses
  • Saving all related documents and paperwork

This type of information can help offer a clear picture of what actually occurred – regardless of what a hotel or resort owner claims happened.