Find the right lawyer now

Trip-and-Fall Lawsuits: Damages

Find a Local Personal Injury Lawyer near You

What Kind of Damages Can a Trip and Fall Incur?

Victims of a trip-and-fall incident can incur numerous damages. These may include:

What Is Required to Collect Damages?

Trip-and-fall lawsuits can originate from an untimely trip over dangerously bumpy terrain, and the fall resulting from it. Damages from a trip and fall need to involve a legally “cognizable,” substantial injury.  Inconvenience, temporary pain, and temporary injuries that heal themselves without medical intervention may not be sufficient to count towards damages.

Special, General, and Punitive Damages

There are two main categories of damages in trip-and-fall cases: special and general. 

Special damages are also called “compensatory,” “actual,” or “economic” damages.  These are damages that cover calculable economic loss, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and replacement of damaged property. Compensatory damages put the injured party in the position he would have been in but for the accident.

General damages reflect non-calculable losses that the plaintiff has suffered, including pain and suffering, emotional distress, compensation for a shortened life expectancy, loss of the companionship of a family member or loved one, loss of reputation, and more.  It is in this area that the jury really has the leverage to award what it feels the plaintiff deserves.

Punitive, or “exemplary” damages, are not often awarded in trip-and-fall cases.  Punitive damages punish defendant’s willful or malicious misconduct. 

Do I Need an Attorney for a Trip and Fall Case?

If you think you have a claim for a trip and fall, you should contact a personal injury attorney to discuss your options.

Photo of page author Gabrielle Hollingsworth

, LegalMatch Legal Writer

Last Modified: 01-13-2014 12:11 PM PST

Law Library Disclaimer
  • No fee to present your case
  • Choose from lawyers in your area
  • A 100% confidential service
What is LegalMatch?

We've helped more than 4 million clients find the right lawyer – for free. Present your case online in minutes. LegalMatch matches you to pre-screened lawyers in your city or county based on the specifics of your case. Within 24 hours experienced local lawyers review it and evaluate if you have a solid case. If so, attorneys respond with an offer to represent you that includes a full attorney profile with details on their fee structure, background, and ratings by other LegalMatch users so you can decide if they're the right lawyer for you.