Slip and fall accidents are a common cause of serious injuries and emergency room visits in West Virginia each year. If a slip and fall takes place on property that is under the care of a homeowner’s association (HOA), the HOA may face liability for the victim’s injuries and medical bills. If you need to file a claim against an HOA in West Virginia, you may need assistance from a personal injury lawyer.

When Can You File a Slip and Fall Accident Claim?

Almost all slip and fall accident claims are based on the plaintiff’s legal theory of negligence. Negligence refers to the failure to act with reasonable care or consideration for the safety of others. In the context of premises liability law, negligence typically refers to a property owner’s failure to maintain or ensure safe premises, resulting in tenant or visitor injuries.

If the premises is under the control of an HOA, the responsibility to maintain a safe property goes to the association. Most HOA management contracts specify the areas that are within the association’s control or supervision. They often include common areas, such as public lawns, gardens, swimming pools, gyms, clubhouses, lobbies, sidewalks, streets, parking lots and staircases.

If a slip and fall accident takes place in an area controlled by the HOA, the HOA may face liability for the victim’s injuries.

What Are an HOA’s Duties of Care?

A duty of care refers to a legal obligation to act in a certain way to avoid injury or harm to others. In a premises liability case, the duty of care belongs to the owner or controller of the land or property where the accident occurred. An HOA’s duties of care to those who live in the community – as well as visitors or guests – include:

  • Inspecting common areas for new or concealed property defects. Property inspections should be a part of an HOA’s regular duties.
  • Promptly repairing any property defects that could foreseeably cause an injury, including slip and fall accident risks.
  • Using warning signs to notify tenants and visitors of potential injury hazards, such as “Caution: Wet Floor” signs during a storm.

HOA contracts will state the association’s responsibilities regarding property care and maintenance in more detail. In general, if a slip and fall accident takes place due to a property defect in a common area that is under the HOA’s control, the victim will have the right to sue the HOA in pursuit of financial damages in West Virginia.

How to File a Slip and Fall Claim Against an HOA

First, report the accident to the HOA. Request a written accident report and remember whom you spoke with. Then, document your accident. Take pictures of the property defect that made you fall before the HOA has the chance to make repairs. Write down the time, date and location of the fall. Check for surveillance cameras that might have caught your accident on tape. If you see one, request a copy of the tape from the HOA.

Go to a medical center as soon as possible for professional care for your slip and fall injury. Keep copies of your medical records and follow your doctor’s treatment plan. Then, when you’re ready, pursue financial compensation for your slip and fall accident by filing a claim. Contact the homeowner’s association in charge of the premises where you fell and ask for its insurance information. Call the insurance company right away to file a claim.

Before you go any further with the claims process, contact a West Virginia premises liability lawyer near you for assistance. A lawyer can help you go up against an HOA to demand fair financial compensation for your losses. A lawyer can also determine if other defendants may share fault for your injury, such as an individual homeowner or a third party. You can trust your lawyer to protect your best interests as the victim of a slip and fall accident on HOA property.

Attorney Timothy Manchin established the Manchin Injury Law Group in 2011 after his law partner of more than 25 years became a West Virginia circuit court judge. His focus is on helping individual clients and entire families victimized by negligent acts.

  • Taylor Downs was easy to talk to (I do not speak the legal language well!) and was very upfront and honest about the entire process of my case. He kept me updated as the case progressed, and answered my relentless questions. The end result was a favorable settlement that I’m not sure could have been any better with anyone else. In short, go see Taylor if you have a case. Don’t be intimidated to go seek his help, he won’t blow your brains out with “legal speak”.


  • Being referred to Taylor was the best thing I could have asked for. Taylor and staff are very easy to talk to. I would highly recommend them to anyone.


  • If I ever have to go through it again I would definetly call Taylor right away. The group was so helpful through my situation and handled everything that needed to be done. They made a stressful situation a stress free situation. With Taylor you dont have to worry about one thing. Definietly would recomend to anyone.

    - TAYLOR G.

  • Efficient, knowledgeable, and friendly.


  • Taylor and Tim helped make a difficult moment in life, a little more bearable. Easy to communicate with and informative. I will absolutely recommend them to everyone.


  • Manchin Injury Law Group, Took care of me when I got into a car accident while I was pregnant. Very scary moment for a first time mom but thankfully Manchin Injury Law Group had my back and treated me great. They made me feel as if I was part of their family. My son is now 7 Months Old and very happy and healthy. I’m very thankful for them for helping me through everything and getting me what we deserved. I 100% would recommend them to anyone. If I ever have an accident again they will be my number 1 phone call!


  • The support given helped me to feel like I was included in my personal injury case every step of the way. I was informed about the entire process throughout. It was amazing how quick the turn around time was and I would definitely recommend Attorney Timothy J. Manchin to anyone!


  • Taylor and Kelly worked hard on my case so I didn’t have to. Thanks guys!


  • Excellent experience dealing with Manchin Injury Law. They were very responsive, professional and easy to talk to. I did my homework before I hired a lawyer after my accident and I am so glad I found Manchin Injury Law Group. If you are injured, give them a call!


  • Taylor and Tim helped make a difficult moment in life, a little more bearable. Easy to communicate with and informative. I will absolutely recommend them to everyone.


  • Kelly and Taylor did all the hard work so that I didn’t have to. They both cared about my circumstance and got me a nice settlement. Taylor knows what he is doing and I felt comfortable with my case in his hands.


  • Great lawyers. They helped me with a West Virginia case.


  • Such a great experience with Taylor and this firm. Thankful for their diligence and their work on our case. Thank you to all!


  • Had a easy and smooth experience with a great attorney so when you go there make sure you ask for Taylor.


  • My experience at the Manchin Injury Law Group was extremely positive, and I would recommend them to anyone who needs a compassionate and experienced lawyer on their side.


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