If you slip, fall, or are otherwise injured in a store, you may have a valid legal claim against that business. Businesses that welcome the public onto their premises have a legal duty to keep them “reasonably” safe.
Whether it’s a “big box” nationwide chain like Walmart, with many locations in Texas and Florida, a grocery chain like Kroger, or a local independent retailer, any business that invites the public onto its premises is obligated to take certain steps to keep customers out of harm’s way. Customers who are injured in slip and fall accidents on store premises may have a valid legal claim against the business.
Duty to Maintain Safe Premises
Like all businesses that open themselves up to the public, stores are legally obligated to maintain reasonably safe premises for the protection of their customers. When a slip and fall accident happens at a department store, grocery store, or even a local “mom and pop”, the business may be liable for injuries if it can be shown that the slip and fall occurred due to unsafe conditions on the property. The store’s responsibility for compensating a customer who slipped and fell often depends on the specific facts of the particular accident, but there are a few common conditions that lead to slip and fall accidents in stores.
Common In-Store Slip and Fall Accidents
Injuries from slip and falls at a store can happen for a variety of reasons. A customer might fall on an accumulation of snow or ice in the entry way of the store or could trip over an errant floor mat. Items on display might be haphazardly placed and can fall in the pathway of a customer. The store might have poor lighting leading to poor visibility, or a prior customer’s spilled latte could have left a puddle in an aisle. The possibilities are endless, but regardless of the cause of the slip and fall accident, the legal responsibility of the store will depend on whether it had, or should have reasonably had, notice of the unsafe condition and failed to take prompt action to fix the problem.