Can I Sue For Slipping And Falling in a Store?

If you’ve injured yourself because of an unsafe condition at a store, then you may have cause for bringing a slip and fall lawsuit. As public establishments, stores have a duty to keep people reasonably safe. If you suffer an injury because of a business owner’s failure to discharge this duty, you should be entitled to compensation.

What Conditions Can Lead to Slip and Fall Accidents?

A number of issues can lead to slip and fall incidents, including:

  • Spilled liquids left on floors
  • Frayed floor mats or rugs
  • Cluttered store aisles
  • Improper shelf-stacking leading to items falling into shopping aisles
  • Poor lighting inside stores, on sidewalks, and in parking lots
  • Cracks and other hazards in parking lots.

These are just a few examples of ways in which injuries can happen. The specific nature of the hazard that led to your fall isn’t necessarily important; the key to a successful lawsuit is being able to prove that the store was negligent. This can be difficult. Stores, especially those belonging to large chains, often have teams of lawyers defending them in these cases. 

So, if you’re planning on suing a store, you need a knowledgeable slip and fall attorney in your corner.

Proving Negligence in a Slip and Fall Case

To prove that a store was negligent, you must be able to show that store operators or employees either created a hazardous condition (such as by cluttering walkways with potential hazards) or knew about a hazardous condition and did not correct it (such as by allowing patches of icy walkways to remain unaddressed).

It will be up to you, as the plaintiff bringing the lawsuit, to show that the store either knew about the danger or should reasonably have known about it. Additionally, customers are required to use reasonable care to protect themselves; if you trip over a hazard that you should have seen, a court might rule that you’re not entitled to damages or reduce the amount of your award.

Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident 

Seeking medical attention (once it’s safe and practical to do so) should be your first priority after any kind of accident. In addition to ensuring your well-being, seeing a doctor will establish a record of your injuries; this will be crucial evidence in any kind of legal action you decide to pursue. From there, you should also:

  • Examine the area in which you fell and take photographs if possible.
  • Get contact information for anyone who witnessed your fall.
  • Report your accident to the store manager and cooperate in filling out a report if they request one.

If you are considering bringing a slip and fall lawsuit, you should keep a file containing information about your accident and injuries. In addition to records of doctor visits and the other items mentioned above, you should maintain a record of how much pain you are in each day, how your injuries affect your day-to-day activities, and how often you take pain relievers or other types of medication.

Statistics on Slip and Fall Accidents

Data from the National Safety Council (NSC) suggests that falls are the second biggest cause of unintentional injury deaths in the United States; they claimed over 42,000 lives in 2020 alone.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), individuals over the age of 65 are the most at risk of serious injury or death from a slip or fall. Around three million seniors visit emergency departments following falls, with hip and head injuries being the most common reasons for ongoing hospitalizations.

The National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI) has published data stating that issues with floors and floor materials are responsible for around two million injuries from falls in the United States each year. The same report revealed that the majority (60%) of falls that result in a compensable injury happen at ground level, rather than from elevation. In other words, most people who get injured in this way fall onto a surface at the same height as the one they were standing on, rather than falling from high ground onto lower ground.

How to File a Legal Claim for a Slip and Fall Injury

Your first step when filing a claim should be to consult with an experienced NYC personal injury lawyer. Only a seasoned attorney will be able to accurately value your claim and properly represent you in dealings with insurance companies or in the courtroom.

Not every claim ends up in front of a judge. There are multiple opportunities to negotiate settlements with insurance companies on a one-to-one basis, both before and after a lawsuit is filed. In fact, this is typically the best way for all parties to do it, as it saves a lot of time, expense, and stress. However, if negotiations prove unproductive, a trip to court may be the only solution.

Your lawsuit will seek compensation for your injuries, including some or all of the following:

  • Medical expenses for doctor visits, hospital stays, prescription drugs, and other health care costs
  • Costs of possible future medical care
  • Lost wages
  • Compensation for lost future earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering damages for both the physical and emotional trauma that you’ve experienced.

What Happens If You Fall While Working at a Store?

If you work in a store and you have a slip and fall accident on the job, you should be entitled to compensation. However, the way to pursue this compensation is different when your fall happens at your place of work. 

Workers’ compensation is a type of payment that should be available to every employee who becomes ill or suffers an injury because of their workplace activities. The vast majority of employers in the state of New York are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, which pays out in the event a worker has to file a claim. However, insurance companies often do their best to avoid paying these benefits.

At Tucker Lawyers, PC, we deal with workers’ comp claims resulting from falls in the workplace every day. If you’re considering filing one, or you’ve already had an application rejected, consider coming to us for a free initial consultation.

Consult a Skilled NY Slip and Fall Attorney for Help with Your Case

If you believe hazardous conditions at a store caused you to fall and injure yourself, you need to consult with a skilled slip and fall attorney. At Tucker Lawyers, PC, we’re ready to help you. Contact us at (516) 399-2364 or via our online contact form to schedule a free case review.

john tucker

Managing Attorney John. J. Tucker, Esq.

John has personally handled thousands of clients who were victims of another’s negligence and fights relentlessly for their rights. John enjoys bringing closure to a client’s matter so that the injured party can move forward with their life. His background enables him to evaluate complex liability related claims and bring resolution to claims in a record time frame. [ Attorney Bio ]

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