What to Know About Sidewalk Accidents in Washington D.C.

If sidewalks are not properly maintained, they can become extremely dangerous. A sidewalk accident can occur at any time due to things like cracks or uneven pavement, but as the cold weather approaches, sidewalks can become even more dangerous. If you have been injured in a sidewalk accident in Washington D.C., you may be entitled to recover compensation. Read on to learn more.

Who is responsible for a sidewalk accident?

Many people assume that their city or municipality is responsible for keeping the sidewalks maintained. In many cases, this responsibility belongs to the property owner. For example, if you slip and fall on the sidewalk in front of someone’s home, the homeowner may be held responsible. The same is true for stores, restaurants, municipal buildings, etc. That being said, it is not always easy to tell who is responsible for a sidewalk accident, so it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. Additionally, when a weather event occurs, property owners have a certain amount of time to clear their property of ice and snow in order to ensure the safety of walkers. If an accident occurs after this allotted time frame, you may be able to recover compensation. Reach out to our firm to determine whether your injury occurred outside this window of time.

Fulfilling the burden of proof:

If you have been injured due to another party’s negligence, you will have to provide proof that this negligence occurred. In order to do this, there are a number of important steps to take:

  • Call 911
    • The police can send an ambulance to the scene, file an accident report, interview witnesses, keep the premises safe, and more.
  • Seek medical attention
    • It is important to visit the hospital, your doctor, or a local urgent care facility immediately after an accident occurs. This is because it is possible to obtain a serious injury without realizing it. Additionally, some injuries do not begin to show symptoms until days or even weeks later. This can also provide you with important proof of the origin and extent of your injuries, which can play a major role in a personal injury case. Before leaving, ask your doctor for a copy of any relevant medical documents.
  • Document the scene
    • While waiting for the ambulance, be sure to take pictures and videos of the hazardous conditions that caused your accident to occur. If anyone saw the accident happen, ask for their name and contact information, as they may be able to corroborate your version of events.
  • File your claim on time
    • In Washington D.C., the statute of limitations for a personal injury accident is generally three years from the date of the accident. Failing to file in time will most likely mean forfeiting your opportunity to recover the compensation you need and deserve to heal.


The experienced personal injury and medical malpractice attorneys at Trombly & Singer, PLLC are prepared to represent clients facing legal matters after being injured due to another person’s negligence. If you require strong legal representation in Washington D.C. or Maryland, contact our firm today to schedule a consultation.