The most common accident that befalls grocery store customers is a slip and fall. With so many liquid containers — full of drinks, oils and sauces — perched on shelves, it’s easy for any inattentive shopper to knock them down and create a slip-and-fall hazard. If you’ve sustained an injury because of such an incident, you should contact a grocery store slip and fall accident lawyer.
Like any other retail establishment, grocery store owners owe what is called a duty of care to their customers: They have an obligation to make reasonable efforts to ensure the safety of their patrons. If they have failed in this, they could be found negligent, and if that negligence leads to an injury, the victim could be entitled to significant compensation, if they take the correct steps.
By calling Conexion Legal at 1-800-201-1220, or writing to us through WhatsApp, you can schedule a free legal consultation to determine if your case entitles you to such damages. If you choose, we can also connect you to a grocery store slip and fall accident lawyer in our network.
What to do after a grocery store slip and fall accident
Grocery store slip and fall accidents aren’t just due to pools of spilled milk or soy sauce. Water from the produce misters, melted ice, pieces of cardboard boxes left in aisles, broken jars, loose floor coverings and smashed food on the already-slick linoleum floors can all lead to serious injuries.
Patrons can suffer fractured or broken bones, head wounds, brain trauma, back and spinal cord injuries and lacerations. Falls can be especially bad for vulnerable people, such as children, the sick and the elderly.
Here’s what to do after you or a loved one sustain such an injury:
- Seek immediate medical attention. You may not be in extreme pain, but that does not mean you haven’t been seriously injured. Especially with head and neck trauma, symptoms can present hours or even days after the initial injury.
- Document as much as you can. This goes not only for your medical costs and diagnoses, but for the scene of the accident, as well. The shape, texture, color and spread of the substance left on the floor matters. Were there any warnings? Were signs posted? Was the area well-lit? Take detailed notes as soon as you can, because you may forget some details with time. If possible, photos of the scene should be taken, whether by you or a companion. All of this is evidence that can be used in legal proceedings.
- Get witnesses’ contact information. If anyone witnessed the accident, or its immediate aftermath, their testimony can help your case, especially if they can testify to the store conditions immediately before and after the accident.
- Request security footage. Grocery stores have security cameras to prevent theft, and that works to your advantage. While witness statements may change as time goes by, and memories fade, surveillance video is objective. But, it can easily get “lost” or “deleted,” so be sure to request the film as soon as possible. If a store stalls, or lies about camera coverage, that fact can be helpful too, once you hire an attorney. Be sure to request the footage in writing, and document the store’s response.
- File a report. Grocery stores are required to have a method for filing incident reports. Fill one out, but remember: They may owe you a duty of care, but they also do not want to pay out on a personal injury claim, especially if their negligence could have contributed to the accident. Everything you say on that report can be used against you in the claim process, so be careful what you say and how you say it. They will also try to fix the problem. Do not let them cover up what happened. Once you file a claim with a grocery store’s insurance company, you cannot sit and wait. It is up to you to prove the store was responsible for your injuries. That’s why your next step should be to …
- Contact an attorney. You can schedule a free legal consultation with Conexion Legal, and we can then connect you to an experienced grocery store slip and fall accident lawyer who can help you prove your case, ensure you abide by proper filing deadlines in your state and who can assist in gathering further evidence, such as maintenance records, employee handbooks and store operation manuals.
What compensation can I get for a grocery store slip and fall injury?
Premises liability laws establish that grocery stores owe their customers a duty of care. In short, they are obligated to be aware of common hazards, and fixing them before someone gets hurt.
You can be compensated for your injuries if the following four conditions are met:
- A dangerous condition existed on the store premises at the time of the injury.
- The property owner knew of the condition, or can be reasonably expected to have known about the condition.
- The property owner failed to fix the situation, or make reasonable efforts to warn patrons, who could not otherwise be reasonably expected to know about the condition.
- As a result of that failure to address the dangerous condition, someone was injured.
It is up to you (and your attorney) to prove that the store was responsible for your injuries. If you can prove that your real injuries were a result of a store’s negligence, you can receive compensation for medical expenses, transportation to and from doctors’ appointments, long-term care, lost wages and pain and suffering.
Contact the Conexión Legal team as soon as possible by calling 1-800-201-1220, or write us through WhatsApp, to receive the best free advice, and to connect with an expert grocery store slip and fall accident lawyer.