Customers have a legal right to be safe from harm while they are in a store, or anywhere on that store’s property.
Store patrons are protected by law if they are injured due to the store’s negligent actions. That protection extends to all areas of the store’s property including the parking lot, entry and exits, aisles, dressing rooms, restrooms, and checkouts.
Kinds of Potential Accidents
Patrons can be injured in parking lots after falling on debris; tripping over torn floor mats in entryways; slipping on wet floors; being cut by a sharp edge on shelving; injured by malfunctioning elevators or escalators or hurt by merchandise falling from shelves.
With their myriad of items, department stores have many potential areas for accidents to happen. Floors can be made slippery by spilled foods, beverages, or household cleaners. Garden centers can be dangerous too with water dripping from live plants or slick, muddy floors.
The law protects not just paying customers, but also delivery persons, contractors, maintenance and repair workers, and anyone else entering the premises as an “invitee.” An invitee is any person who has legitimate cause to be on the property.
If the store fails in their duty of care and a patron or invitee is injured, there could be reasonable grounds to file a lawsuit against the store.
Negligence in Department Store Slip and Fall Accidents
It is not enough to simply slip or fall in a department store. To be able to file a lawsuit against a department store, you must be able to show that:
- The store was negligent, and
- That negligence was a cause for your accident
Proving the existence of an unsafe condition and that the store was negligent by knowing about the hazard and not taking precautions to remedy the hazard, are integral to a successful personal injury lawsuit.
The nature of the accident will determine who you might be able to sue. It will all depend on whether the store owner owns or leases the property.
If a structural issue is the cause for your accident, you would most likely bring suit against the landlord or property owner. Structural issues include leaky pipes causing water to puddle up on the floor. However, if you slipped on a floor recently mopped by a store employee who failed to place warning signs, your case would be against the store.
Important Notes About Slip and Fall Cases
If you are not sure what you slipped on or why the floor was slick, it will be difficult to win your case. As soon as you compose yourself after your fall, you should look around carefully at the floor, your shoes, and your clothing to determine the reason you fell.
It is also important to report the incident to store management, so that the accident can be documented. How long the hazard existed and whether it was marked, say for instance with a “Wet Floor” sign, will all determine whether you have a case. All these details need to be documented in the incident report as well.
Contact Our Experienced Denver Slip and Fall Attorneys
If you or someone you love has been injured in a slip and fall accident in a department store and you believe their negligence was to blame, it is important to speak to an experienced Denver slip and fall accident attorney immediately. Contact the Denver attorneys at Paysinger Law, P.C. today to discuss your case. Our law firm offers FREE case consultations and can be reached at 303.279.0221.
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