Have you been the victim of a slip and fall accident inside of a store or market? If so, you might have a personal injury claim against that store for your injuries.
Stores are required to maintain a safe environment for customers entering it’s business and often have employees perform regularly scheduled “aisle checks” to ensure that there are no spills or dangerous debris on the ground.
Slip, and falls or trip and falls can happen inside of stores for a variety of reasons. For example, you might be walking near the frozen food section, and moments earlier, a store employee had caused a spill but failed to clean it up or place warning cones near the area to warn customers.
Then, within a minute or so, the puddle of liquid causes you to slip and fall and sustain severe injury. The store would be liable for your injuries because the store knew that the spill existed and is responsible for having created a dangerous condition for customers.
The store, in this example, would be liable for paying your medical bills, lost wages, future medical treatment, as well as pain and suffering.
However, just because you feel inside of the store does not mean you are automatically entitled to compensation. California courts have held that a store is NOT always responsible for slip and fall accidents.
For example, imagine a child had spilled some juice on the floor and walked away without telling anyone. Then, 30 seconds later, you enter that aisle and slip and fall on that juice within a minute or so. The store likely would have a strong defense against your claim for personal injury. This is because California courts have held that stores must have reasonable time to become aware of the dangerous condition before they can be held responsible for customers’ injuries. In the example, it would be difficult for a store to notice the spill caused by a child who remained silent about the spill and to either clean the spill or place warning cones near it within one minute.
In a nutshell, important factors to consider in a slip and fall case include but are not limited to:
Who caused the spill?
How long had the spill been there?
Were there warning signs/cones near the spill?
Did the store know about the spill before the fall?
However, every single case is different, and you should always speak to an attorney regarding the specifics of your case and whether or not you have a strong claim against the store for damages.
The Law Office of Gustavo Magana provides free consultations on slip and fall cases.