What To Do If You Slip & Fall While Shopping in Gainesville, FL
Though millions of Americans take advantage of the convenience of online shopping, there are some things we still need to shop in person for. When we go shopping, often the idea of being injured through a slip-and-fall accident is far from our minds. But services, wholesale, and retail trade industries combined account for more than 60 percent of injuries resulting from same level falls, such as a slip-and-fall. Injury lawyers with Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. will assist you after a slip-and-fall accident while shopping to resolve your case.
Americans made an average of 1.6 trips per week to the grocery store in 2016. Unfortunately, grocery stores are fraught with possible slip-and-fall accidents. Patrons’ wet shoes dripping rain from one of the many afternoon thunderstorms in Florida. A broken jar with liquid seeping into an aisle. If not cleaned up or designated with signage or a barrier, a slip-and-fall by a patron is possible.
Plaza or Outlet Shopping
As traditional malls have declined in recent years, shoppers have begun flocking to plaza or outlet malls to shop. With an uptick in traffic comes an increased risk for slips-and-falls. Clothing stores that have been busy may have clothes hanging over the edges of low shelves or lying in aisles. Also, any food and/or drinks split by other shoppers will be a slip-and-fall hazard unless promptly reported to store employees and cleaned up.
Slip-and-Fall Accidents During Holiday Shopping
The hustle and bustle of the holidays tends to lend itself to more slip-and-fall accidents. Fellow shoppers are carrying handfuls of bags and packages in and out of stores while merchandise on the shelves may be stocked or put back in a haphazard manner. As with any other season of the year, property and store owners have a legal responsibility to their patrons to keep pathways, floors, aisles, and other walkways on their property cleared for use.
What To Do After A Fall Injury While Shopping
In the moments after a slip-and-fall while shopping, you’re likely thinking more about getting up than what steps you’ll need to take to document the incident. But keeping these steps in mind will be highly beneficial should you seek out a Gainesville personal injury attorney.
Seek Medical Attention
Most slip-and-fall accidents are minor and probably don’t need medical attention, but checking with a doctor has dual reasoning. One, broken bones, head trauma, or internal injuries may not surface immediately but a doctor would be able to begin treatment as soon as the injuries are discovered. Two, you’ll have written documentation from a doctor early in the process. This will come in handy when you contact personal injury attorneys in Gainesville, FL.
Inspect the Fall Area
The vast majority of slip-and-fall accidents happen for an often visible reason. Before leaving the scene, look around. Is there a spilled drink on the flooring? Or was a rug not secured in the walkway? Writing down your version of the accident as soon as you can will help a personal injury lawyer in deciding how to proceed with a lawsuit against the business.
Document with Photos
With smartphones now commonplace, use yours to take photos of the accident area. The owner(s) of the property or store will take photos, meaning if you don’t have photos of your own, theirs will be the only ones considered in court.
Find & Identify Witnesses
While it’s ideal to have witnesses who see you slip-and-fall, even a person who can attest to the conditions of the location will bolster your claim. If people saw the fall or afterwards, write down their name, address, and best contact phone number.
Notify the Store Immediately
Most stores will have you fill out your part of an accident report after notifying a manager. It’s not necessary to attempt to resolve the issue at the business. A Gainesville personal injury attorney will work with you and the business to resolve your slip-and-fall accident.
Who Is Responsible For My Slip-and-Fall Injury?
The burden of proof for liability generally falls on the business itself. However, juries and courts have found in favor of businesses in a handful of slip-and-fall cases in recent years.
Property & Store Owner Liability
As a property and/or store owner, if you open your business to the public or otherwise invite the public, you automatically have a legal obligation to maintain reasonably safe premises. What “reasonably” means does have some room for interpretation, but most courts will rule against a property or store owner if unsafe conditions are found. From there, specific facts of the slip-and-fall accident will be weighed in determining both liability and any monetary compensation the business may be responsible for.
Contact Injury Lawyers With Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. After A Slip-and-Fall Accident
A slip-and-fall accident while shopping can hurt both yourself and your ego, but personal injury attorneys in Gainesville, FL with Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. can help the pain quickly disappear. Our attorneys have years of experience representing people injured in a store or business following a slip-and-fall accident. We approach each case with the utmost professionalism and fight for your due compensation from the business. If you’ve been injured in a slip-and-fall accident while shopping, contact Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. today!