According to recent data, falls are responsible for about 30% of all non-fatal injuries in the United States. For some injury victims, a fall can simply result in a bit of embarrassment but for others, a bad fall can indicate the beginning of a huge lifestyle change or even lead to death. The average cost of a slip-and-fall injury has been estimated at $30,000, including medical bills, physical therapy, and missed wages. Frequently, slip-and-fall injuries occur in a grocery store or other retail establishment. In most instances, when customer is injured in a Target, the cause of the injury can usually be traced back to a negligent employee, manager, or maintenance crew. An injured customer often will seek to recover for such an injury through an action in ordinary negligence or premises liability. Premises liability is a special form of negligence in which the duty owed to the plaintiff depends upon the status of the plaintiff at the time when the incident occurred. If you or a loved one were seriously hurt in a slip-and-fall or trip and fall accident at a Target, the experienced slip and fall attorneys at Suarez & Montero can help! After a slip and fall, our team can run a thorough investigation and help you figure out how to go about filing an insurance claim or lawsuit against Target. In this article, we will discuss how a customer who has been injured as a result of a “slip and fall” accident can prove a cause of action in ordinary negligence or premises-liability negligence against Target.
Proving a Slip and Fall Claim Against Target
The plaintiff in a retail slip-and-fall action ordinarily will be the customer injured in the accident although a customer’s spouse also may be a plaintiff; a representative may bring an action for a minor, incompetent, or deceased customer. The action usually is brought against the retailer although an action against a store owner may be appropriate in some circumstances. The elements of a cause of action in negligence for injuries sustained by a customer in a slip-and-fall accident in a retail store consist of duty, breach of duty, causation, and actual injury (damages). Here’s a brief explanation for each element:
Duty: To determine if the duty element of a slip-and-fall negligence case is met, the analysis is two-fold: first, the court must determine the existence of a duty, and second, if a duty exists, the court must evaluate the scope of that duty. Included within a retailer’s duty to a customer to exercise reasonable care to keep the premises in a reasonably safe condition includes a duty to warn the customer of a dangerous condition that is not readily apparent to the invitee if the retailer is aware of such a condition. Some states have laws in place that impose liability for injuries caused by a landowner’s or occupier’s failure to exercise ordinary care in keeping the premises and approaches safe. Such statutory duty may be nondelegable even where a third party is contractually obligated to provide maintenance services on the premises.
Breach: To sustain a cause of action in negligence in a slip-and-fall case, a party must prove that the retailer breached its duty to the customer. That is, the customer must prove a causal connection between the breach of the retailer’s duty and the resulting injury.
Causation: The plaintiff in a negligence action for injuries sustained by a customer in a slip and fall accident in a retail store must establish that the customer’s injury was caused by the retailer’s breach of its duty to the customer. In some jurisdictions, the element of causation is separated into causation in fact and proximate or legal cause, both of which must be proved. Failure to prove what actually caused a plaintiff to fall in a situation where there could be other causes is fatal to a plaintiff’s cause of action; however, a plaintiff is not required to rule out all plausible variables and factors that could have caused or contributed to the accident. Rather, to establish proximate cause, a plaintiff need prove only that it was more likely or more reasonable that the alleged injury was caused by the defendant’s negligence than by some other agency, that is, that the defendant’s negligent act or omission was a substantial factor in bringing about the injury.
Damages: The plaintiff in a negligence action for injuries sustained by a customer in a slip-and fall case must prove damages as a result of the customer’s injury. Which means the customer must prove actual loss or damage.
Call a Target Slip and Fall Injury Attorney Today!
In South Florida, thousands are injured each year in business establishments in slip and falls and trip and fall style accidents. A slip and fall accident can occur almost anywhere. As a customer, you have to always be aware of your surroundings. Even so, when a negligent property owner or employee creates a condition that harms customers or fails to take actions to prevent said harm to customers, they should be held responsible for any injuries that result. At Suarez and Montero, our policy is that if you don’t recover, we won’t charge you a dime. Not to mention, we also provide free slip and fall accident consultations where we can evaluate the facts of your case and provide you with an overview of your options. Our lawyers can provide you with efficiency, experience, vital information, and can help obtain the compensation you need to recover from your injury. We are available 24/7 to give you a free, no risk case consultation.
We serve clients throughout Florida including those in the following areas:
Miami-Dade: Aventura, Coral Gables, Doral, Fontainebleau, Hialeah, Homestead, Kendall, Miami, Miami Beach, Miami Lakes, North Miami, Tamiami, and Westchester.
Broward: Fort Lauderdale, Hallandale Beach, Hollywood, Pembroke Pines, and Weston; and Palm Beach County including Boca Raton, Lake Worth, and West Palm Beach.