Who Is Responsible for a Slip and Fall Accident at a Resort?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 15, 2021

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If you are injured in a slip and fall accident on a resort or hotel due to slippery conditions, the resort may be responsible for paying for your injuries if the resort was negligent, or careless, in some way. The fact that you fell and injured yourself is not sufficient to prove the resort is responsible – you must be able to prove the business was negligent in allowing the conditions that caused your accident to exist.  Every hotel or resort has attorneys prepared to defend slip and fall claims, so if you have been injured at a resort you can help your case by contacting an experienced attorney for assistance.

When a Resort is Responsible for a Slip and Fall Accident

Fault for a slip and fall accident is going to turn on negligence, or unreasonable carelessness, which will come down to two primary factors:

  1. Whether or not resort employees knew about the hazardous condition and had opportunity to correct it before the injury occured.  A hotel or resort that claims it did not know about the condition may still be liable if it should have known the hazard existed, but failed to pay proper attention.  
    • For example, if there was a sudden sleet storm and the sidewalk at a resort slicked-up quickly. If a guest fell immediately, before anyone on the resort’s staff could become aware of the problem or do anything about it, the resort would probably not be liable. On the other hand, if there was an ice storm overnight and someone slipped on a path at the resort 12 hours later, the resort probably would be liable—since it is reasonable to get rid of ice on a path that people frequently walk on. The failure to do anything about the ice 12 hours after the storm would very likely be negligent and the resort would probably have to pay for injuries.
  2. How much control the resort had over the situation.
    • For example, if a guest slipped on vegetable oil from a bottle dropped by a resort employee the resort is likely responsible since they are responsible for the employee’s actions. On the other hand, if the guest slipped because another guest squirted slick suntan lotion on the ground, the resort might not be responsible because the other guest is not under resort authority.  Of course, the resort could be liable in this circumstance if it fails to clean up the sun tan lotion in a timely fashion and a guest eventually slips on it.

Responsiblity for injuries has to be judged on a case-by-case basis, and the law will hold a resort responsible if the facts show that it failed to keep guests safe.  An experienced attorney can be a useful ally in proving a hotel or a resort is liable for your slip and fall injuries.

Common Causes of Hotel or Resort Slip and Fall Accidents

Hotels and resorts vary in the type of environment provided, and every case is unique, however there are some common slip and fall accidents that indicate a hotel or resort may be liable:

  • Ski lift accident due to icy conditions or poor maintenance
  • Slip and fall on icy walkways or parking lots
  • Injury in a cabin or hotel room due to faulty flooring or leaky conditions
  • Injury on a pool deck or off an unsafe diving board
  • Slip and fall in a resort restaurant, gift shop, or super market
  • Skiing accident

While the listed conditions do not always result in slip and fall accident liability for a hotel or a resort, they are common and warrant close attention by the injured party.  Consult an experienced attorney for more information.

What to do After a Resort Slip and Fall Accident

Your actions immediately after a slip and fall accident can impact your success in a subsequent insurance claim or lawsuit.  As soon as possible after your slip and fall accident you can, and should, gather evidence by:

  • Taking pictures of the area
  • Getting names and contact information of witnesses
  • Getting contact information from resort employees who assist you
  • Keeping documentation of all medical attention you receive from resort staff
  • Taking note of all warning signs, or lack thereof, in the area of your slip and fall accident

Immediately after the accident, you will likely need to file an official slip and fall accident report or claim with the resort to put the company on notice that the incident occurred.  If you need to fill out a report, keep in mind that commentary such as “I should have noticed this” or “I’m fine” can jeopardize the success of your lawsuit.  You are allowed to stick to the facts and provide only the basic information.  Contact an attorney who is experienced with slip and fall accidents as soon as possible if you need assistance. 

NOTE:  Everything you say and do after an accident at a resort can impact your ability to collect money for your injuries.  Most slip and fall lawyers offer free consultations, so reach out to one before jeopardizing your claim with careless statements.

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