Do I have a Slip and Fall claim?

2018
04.19

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What You Need to Know if You’re Injured on Someone Else’s Property

One minute you’re testing the firmness of an avocado in the produce section of your neighborhood grocery store, the next moment you’re laying on your back on the ground with a searing pain in your shoulder, wondering what just happened.  You look down at your feet and see the culprit, a puddle of water turned the tile floor into a secret slip-n-slide.

Injuries from this kind of accident, a special type of Arizona personal injury case known as “slip and fall” often entitle the injured person to recover compensation from the grocery store or its insurance company where it occurred, but it’s not quite automatic.

Once you’ve established that a condition on someone’s property caused your injury, the next step to determine if you have a slip and fall claim is finding out if the property owner or one of its employees acted negligently.  This is how a personal injury case in Arizona would generally start.

Negligence means that the grocery store or one of its employees didn’t take the steps to protect the customer from an injury that a reasonable person in their position would have. The most obvious example would be if a store manager spilled her drink on the floor, saw the liquid puddle up in front of the avocados and did nothing to clean it up for an extended period of time.

Not all examples are so obvious though.  What if the manager spilled her drink, notified an employee so they could clean it up, and then the customer was injured as the employee was bringing a mop and a caution sign?  It may depend on how long the employee took to do that. What if the spill was caused by another customer, rather than a store employee? The answer may lie in whether and when a store employee was made aware of the spill, or whether they should have discovered it sooner.

Determining negligence in slip and fall cases is not always an easy thing to do. If you find yourself wondering what you and the avocado you accidentally flung across the aisle as you fell ever did to deserve this, it’s best to consult an experienced Arizona personal injury attorney as soon as possible to find out if you have a slip and fall claim.

Don’t be deterred if you didn’t actually “slip” or “fall.” Any accident case that arises from an accident on land, in someone’s house or in a retail establishment falls under the Arizona personal injury umbrella of “slip and fall.”  So whether you cut yourself on the sharp edge of poorly maintained bar stool, you were beamed by a can of paint falling off a high shelf of home improvement store, or you fell into the hole your neighbor forgot to tell you about during a barbeque, it’s always a good idea to talk to an attorney to find out if they or their insurers are required to pay for your “slip and fall” injuries.