You visit a local grocery store several times a week. Among the dangers you and your family face each day, walking through the market probably isn’t one you have considered. But when grocery stores aren't properly cleaned and maintained, they can become hazardous places.
If you slip or trip and fall in a store, when is it your fault, and when is the store liable? We explain the difference.
Grocery Stores Are Responsible for Maintaining a Safe Environment
Grocery stores have a legal duty to keep their premises safe for customers, delivery people, and other visitors to the property. This includes monitoring the store for possible hazards and taking care of them before someone is injured. While stores cannot be expected to foresee every possible cause of harm, they are expected to take reasonable care to prevent and correct common problems. These include:
- Slippery floors from spills or leaks
- Folded or missing floor mats
- Pallets and boxes obstructing aisles
- Items falling from shelves
- Uneven or icy sidewalks and parking lots
If these hazards exist, and it's reasonable to assume that store personnel knew or should have known they existed, the store can be held liable for injuries that result.
How to Hold a Grocery Store Responsible
Slip and fall claims aren't easy to win. If you were injured in a grocery store slip and fall, immediately contact a personal injury attorney to investigate the incident and help you prove your claim. A successful claim must show that all of the following are true:
- The supermarket owed you a duty of care. If you're a customer or a legitimate visitor, the store owes you a duty of care.
- The store breached its duty of care. If a dangerous hazard is present, the store has breached its duty.
- You were injured because of the hazard. An accident report and medical records can show that you fell because of the slippery floor, obstacle, or falling merchandise.
- You have real and measurable damages. You'll have to show the damages—including medical bills and lost wages—that resulted from your injury.
At Mahaney & Pappas, LLP, we believe you have a right to hold a negligent store responsible when injured due to its breach of responsible care. If we determine through our free case evaluation that you have a strong claim for damages, we'll fight to secure the settlement you deserve. If we think you won't win a claim, we won't waste your time or money making false promises. Fill out our contact form or call our Framingham office today to learn more.