Going to the store is something that may hurt your wallet, but it shouldn't leave you injured anywhere else. Any business that has a facility open to the public has an obligation to maintain safe facilities. Unfortunately, with large stores, it is easy for maintenance issues and cleaning issues to go unattended for some time.
This can lead to an unfortunate accident, such as a slip-and-fall incident. Slipping on a wet surface, overly waxed floors or spilled items can lead to serious, even life-altering, injuries. People who experience a slip-and-fall can end up suffering traumatic brain injuries, soft tissue injuries and broken bones. If the circumstances of your slip-and-fall incident relate to a failure on the part of a business owner to maintain safe facilities, you may have grounds for a premises liability lawsuit.
Understanding premises liability helps you determine what rights you have
If someone falls in a store because they are drunk or under the influence of drugs, the store is likely not responsible for that. However, if someone slips and falls because the store failed to clean something up or repair a leak, then the business may be held accountable.
Premises liability laws exist for exactly that purpose. People have a right to expect safe facilities when they visit a place open to the public. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Premises liability basically addresses who is responsible when someone gets hurt on another person's property. When an injury is the result of inadequate maintenance, the injured party may have a premises liability claim.
Most businesses carry comprehensive insurance policies to offset their premises liability. These policies will cover medical costs and property damage incurred by visitors who wind up hurt at a business. Victims may also be able to file a lawsuit against either the business or the insurance company if the insurance coverage is not adequate for the losses sustained.
Slip-and-fall injuries can cost people a lot of money
While some people get right up and laugh after falling, other people are not so lucky. The older someone is when they fall, the more likely they are to suffer severe injuries. Of course, young people can get hurt badly, too. Age doesn't factor into whether or not you hit your head on the floor when you fall, after all. There are medical expenses to consider, as well as lost wages.
In some cases, people may have a hard time returning to work, especially in the event of a traumatic brain injury or broken bone. For those who get hurt in a business or store, it's important to first report the incident before leaving the facility and then seek medical care. Taking these two steps will help protect their right to claim damages in the future.