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Store Liability for a Slip and Fall Accident

Posted on October 12th, 2019

The last thing you should have to worry about when you walk into the store is getting injured in a slip and fall incident. Unfortunately, these accidents happen for various reasons. When they do, it is important to determine how much liability to store has, if any, when it comes to covering damages you have sustained.

A store can have a legal liability to a slip and fall accident victim. You may want to consider contacting a qualified and experienced slip and fall attorney to help you work through the complexities of your case.

What are some examples where a store can be held liable for a slip and fall?

There are various ways that store slip and fall incidents occur. This can include:

  • Spills on the floor. Supermarkets, in particular, are at high risk of spills. When items fall off shelves and bust, it is important that store employees clean up the mess as quickly as possible.
  • No wet floor sign. Whenever store employees mop as part of regular cleaning or due to a spill, they should place wet floor signs up to let customers know there is a slip hazard.
  • Loose carpeting or mats. Many stores use carpets or mats throughout the location. If the tread on the bottom of the carpet or mats is worn, they could become slip and fall hazards.
  • Store entrances. The entrance to a store become a prime slip and fall area, especially when it is raining or snowing outside. Store employees should be vigilant when the weather is wet out and mop entryways.

Duty to maintain safe premises

Stores have a duty to care under premises liability laws. This means that store owners, managers, and employees have an obligation to make their building and surrounding property safe for customers. This includes watching out for common hazards that can arise inside the store as well as taking care of hazards when they know about them and before someone gets hurt. Premises liability laws require stores to prevent injuries that are reasonably foreseeable.

For example, if an employee is loading a store shelf and leave discarded boxed in the aisle, it is reasonably foreseeable that a store patron will slip or trip on the box. A store that breaches its duty of care could be held liable for their negligence.

Example of in store injuries

There are various injuries a person can sustain in a slip and fall accident. This can include:

  • Broken wrists, arms, and legs
  • Dislocated joints
  • Broken hips
  • Fractured pelvis
  • Head wounds, including skull fractures, cuts, and bruises
  • Concussions or other traumatic brain injuries
  • Back and spinal cord injuries
  • Lacerations to extremities

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says that one out of every five falls causes a serious injury. According to the CDC, three million older people are treated in emergency departments for fall injuries each year.

These injuries can lead to major economic and non-economic expenses, and slip and fall victims could be entitled to the following:

  • Coverage of medical expenses related to the slip and fall
  • Recovery of lost wages if the victim cannot work
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • Loss of enjoyment of life damages
  • Possible punitive damages against the negligent party

If you have been the victim of a store slip and fall incident, please seek assistance from a skilled personal injury attorney today.