Do you want to know why slip and fall accidents happen in grocery stores in 2022? If YES, here are 10 reasons to take note of. All of us have seen a hazard in a grocery store a time or two. Most of the time, these issues are marked by caution signs. Other times, they aren’t and some of us report the issues to an employee so no one gets hurt.

Unfortunately, there are times when hazards aren’t taken care of before someone slips and falls. Slip and fall settlements are some of the most common in personal injury law. That’s because victims are entitled to damages when the accident wasn’t their fault.

Like all businesses that open themselves up to the public, stores are legally expected 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.

A store can be legally responsible for unsafe conditions under a few different theories. The store owner may be liable if it created the unsafe condition, by using an exceptionally slippery wax to clean its floors, for example. The owner may also be liable if he/she knew of the condition, even if he did not create it, but failed to take steps to remedy it. For example, if one customer spills a drink in an aisle, and another customer injures her back after slipping on the puddle and falling on the floor.

Note that in such circumstances, the injured person will have to show some evidence that the store knew or should have reasonably known of the condition. There are expected to show some evidence that the spill sat there long enough for the store to have become aware of its presence and have a reasonable opportunity to clean it up and prevent an accident. The injured party may also show that the store knew (or should have known) that spilled products were common, but failed to have a system in place for monitoring and cleaning up such spills.

A customer is required to exercise reasonable caution to protect him or herself, and can’t hold the store accountable for every last thing that goes wrong. The main question to ask is whether a reasonably careful customer would have noticed the unsafe condition and avoided it. If so, then the store might not be held liable for the injury.

10 Basic Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents at Grocery Stores

So many people spend at least one or two days a week at the grocery store. Most don’t expect anything bad to happen during their trip, like a slip and fall accident. Unfortunately, however, slip and fall accidents are a common occurrence in grocery stores and often due to negligence. These accidents can cause head injuries, broken bones, and other serious injuries. Here are some of the basic causes of slip and fall accidents at grocery stores.

  1. Liquid And Food Spills

In a grocery store, items can get knocked off of shelves, babies throw down bottles, sippy cups break open, and people eat while they shop and drop things. Maybe a jar was dropped or a glass chocolate milk bottle was knocked into the floor. All these are common hazards. If the mess isn’t quickly addressed, a customer can slip and fall.

  1. Freshly Mopped Floors

Grocery floors have to be mopped on a regular basis to stay clean. However, they can be quite slick after cleaning. Customers may not know these floors are wet and slip over them. Grocery store employees should put up warning signs of wet floors to prevent customers from getting hurt.

  1. Uneven Flooring, Torn Carpet, And Other Flooring Issues

There are a number of flooring hazards that can come about in a grocery store. A floor tile might be missing or a rug is torn. Note that one crucial issue is when a rug won’t lie flat on the floor, causing a trip hazard. If a warning isn’t posted or hazardous rugs removed or replaced, the grocery store could be held liable for injuries resulting from an accident.

  1. Dirty Restrooms

Restrooms that aren’t cleaned regularly pose a slipping hazard for customers. Spilled water on the floor, toilet paper, and other debris on the floor can cause customers to trip and fall. It’s imperative for employees to check up on the restrooms a few times a day and clean up messes as necessary to avoid accidents.

  1. Parking Lot Hazards

If a parking lot hazard, such as gaping cracks, holes, and uneven pavement causes a fall, there are multiple parties that could be held responsible. These parties include the grocery store or building owner and/or the people responsible for maintaining the parking lot.

  1. Improper Training

Slips and falls often happen in grocery stores and in many cases, this is caused by improper training. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), together with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, have created a fact sheet that shows how easy it is to prevent slip and fall accidents at work.

A key element in this is training. Note that every employee should be properly trained to use the tools and equipment necessary for the job. Furthermore, each job should be properly planned and workers should be provided with the tools they need in order to remain safe. Failure to do so could leave the employer liable for damages.

  1. Entrances

A certain degree of ongoing maintenance is expected to be done around entryways, especially on days when the weather is bad. Water, snow, and ice can cause a slippery entrance. Floor mats that are flat to the floor can help avoid accidents, but a person can trip if the floor mat is raised in any way. In addition, not having the proper precautions in place can lead to a liability issue.

  1. Footwear

According to the National Floor Safety Institute, about 24% of all slips and falls are caused by improper footwear. This does not however mean that only people who wear six inch heels are at risk. Indeed, sneakers or work boots can be equally dangerous. The big risk is presented when shoes do not offer the right type of traction. This can lead to slips and falls, not just at work but also at home or even in public.

  1. Lack of Warnings

In some cases, it’s not possible for the grocery store staff to immediately remediate a hazard. They can, however, put up barriers or signs that properly warn the public to be cautious. Not posting these warnings or taking measures to keep customers out of hazardous areas can lead to a negligence claim if a fall occurs.

  1. Fraud

According to the National Floor Safety Institute, about 3% of slip and fall cases are actually fraudulent. In some cases, this is because the stage for the fall was set. For example, someone may purposefully spill oil in a grocery store and slip on it.

Also, some people seek damages for an injury from a party that is not liable for it. For example, someone may have sustained an injury at home but would then claim it actually happened at work. Finally, there are cases where a slip and fall injury is claimed but it never occurred at all. Fraud cases are incredibly rare, thankfully, but they do list in the top 6 causes of slip and fall accidents.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What Happens When You Slip And Fall In A Store?

A store that opens its doors to the public has a duty to keep the property reasonably safe. An unsafe condition that contributes to an accident can lead to an injury claim against the business. If you slip and fall in a store, you may have a personal injury claim against that business.

  1. What Should You Do When You Slip Fall In A Store?

What you need to do when you slip and fall in a store should be to your desecration. You can let the store owner know so that can prevent it in future or you can sue them for negligence. To receive compensation for your slip-and-fall injuries, you will need to show that the owner of the store was negligent. When a store is not maintained with customers’ safety in mind, the owner can be held accountable for any injury a person suffers while in the store.

  1. Who Is Liable After A Slip And Fall In A Store?

When a slip and fall accident occurs on store property, the property owner may face liability if it is established that they didn’t take reasonable steps to keep their property safe. In addition to damages for medical bills, the store owners may owe the victim for lost wages, pain and suffering and other losses.

  1. What Are Your Legal Options?

If you’ve fallen and injured yourself because of an unsafe condition at a store, then you may have cause for bringing a legal claim. If they fail to do so and someone is injured, store operators may be guilty of negligence and be subject to a lawsuit.

  1. How Much Can You Get For A Slip And Fall In Walmart?

The amount you can get for a slip and fall in Walmart depends on the state of fall and of course the nature and severity of injury as a result of the fall. But recently, a jury awarded $7.5 million in Walmart slip and fall lawsuit case.

  1. What Conditions Can Cause Slip And Fall Accidents In Stores?

Here are 4 Common Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents in Stores;

  • Wet and Uneven Floors.
  • Environmental Conditions.
  • Unsafe Ladders and Stairs.
  • Improper Safety Practices.
  1. Can You Sue A Store For A Slip And Fall?

Yes, you can sue a store for a slip and fall and as a matter of fact, if you have fallen and injured yourself because of an unsafe condition at a store, then you may have cause for bringing a legal claim. If they fail to do so and someone is injured, store operators may be guilty of negligence and be subject to a lawsuit.

  1. What Are Some Examples Where A Store Can Be Liable For A Slip And Fall?

Here are some examples where a store can be liable for a slip and fall;

  • Products that fall in aisles.
  • Trees or other debris that fall on sidewalks and other places where customers walk.
  • Putting product displays too close together.
  • Letting too many people in the store at one time
  • Allowing customers to push and shove to be the first one to get to an item
  • Leaving water or other liquids on the floor
  • Failing to keep shopping carts out of the way in the parking lot
  • Paper towels on the bathroom floor that cause a slip
  • Using floor wax that’s too slippery
  • Failure to clean ice, snow, or leaves from places where customers go.
  1. When Is A Store Liable For A Slip And Fall In The Parking Lot?

If you slipped and fell in a store parking lot, here are five questions that will help determine if you have a claim for compensation:

  • Why Were You On The Premises?
  • What Caused You To Slip And Fall?
  • Is There Evidence To Support Your Case?
  1. What Is The Statute Of Limitations On A Slip And Fall?

Plaintiffs have six months to file most claims against a state government agency, or 120 days for claims involving defective highways or public buildings. If the claim is denied or ignored, the statute of limitations is extended to two years. Filing deadlines vary depending on the rules for each jurisdiction.

  1. What Do You Do If Injured In A Grocery Store?

If you were injured at a grocery store and did not report it, you should go back to the store immediately, walk up to the customer service desk and ask to speak to a manager. If enough time has passed, the dangerous condition may be gone.

  1. Can You File A Premises Liability Claim After A Store Slip And Fall?

A slip and fall case is a type of premises liability claim. In premises liability cases, the negligent party can be the property owner, landowner, or property manager. If the accident happened on a store, the store can potentially be held responsible.

  1. How Do You Treat A Slip And Fall Injury?

Interestingly, minor pain from a slip and fall injury might go away with rest. Applying an ice pack or taking over-the-counter pain medication can also help. No matter what you choose, taking a whole body health injury recovery option is the best call.

  1. Is A Store Liable For A Customer Injury?

A store may be liable for a customer’s injury if what led to the injury is caused by negligence on the side of the store.

  1. How Do Slip And Fall Cases Work?

In a Slip and Fall case, the liability usually rests on the owner of the property on which the accident occurred. Depending on the type of property you were injured on, the owner could be private, commercial, or a government entity.

  1. How Do You Start A Slip And Fall Case?
  • Report The Accident To The Owner of the Premises.
  • Get The Names of Witnesses.
  • Take Pictures As Soon As Possible.
  • Get Medical Treatment If You Need It.
  • Make Sure To Explain How You Got Hurt To Your Health Care Providers.
  • Fill Out Accident Report Forms Accurately.
  • Do Not Give A Tape Recorded Statement To The Insurer
  • Attend Your Scheduled Medical Treatment
  1. What To Do If You Experience Retail Store Negligence And Are Injured In A Department Store?

You have two options, report the case to the store owner and let it be or sue the department store to court. But please note that only two percent of such cases go to a jury trial.

  1. How Are Slip And Fall Settlements Calculated?

Slip and fall settlements are determined by negotiating the amount that the responsible party is willing to pay and what the victim is willing to accept. A slip and fall settlement is determined by evaluating the likely result in the case if it were to go to trial in front of a jury.

  1. How Much Compensation Do You Get For A Trip Or Fall?

There is no set amount of compensation for an injury caused by a slip, trip or fall. The reason for this is because it really depends how the injury has impacted your life. Two people can have an identical injury but be affected differently.

  1. How Do You Prove Negligence In A Slip And Fall?
  • The property owner owed you a duty of care.
  • They breached the duty of care.
  • The breach caused your accident and injuries.
  • You have damages resulting from the accident.
  1. How Are Slip And Fall Settlements Calculated?

Generally, slip and fall settlements are determined by negotiating the amount that the responsible party is willing to pay and what the victim is willing to accept. A slip and fall settlement is determined by evaluating the likely result in the case if it were to go to trial in front of a jury.

  1. Are Slip And Fall Cases Hard To Prove?

No matter what type of personal injury case you may have, it will always rely on your ability to prove negligence. In a slip and fall accident claim, you also have to prove all the other elements of a negligence claim. That worst-case scenario is all too common, which is why it is so hard to win slip and fall cases.

  1. How Much Compensation Do You Get For Slipping On A Wet Floor?

The average slip and fall settlement is between $15,000 and $45,000. Whether your case falls within the average range depends on several factors. If your injuries are relatively minor, your case may be below average.

  1. Can A Slip And Fall Cause A Bulging Disc?

Yes, a slip and fall accident can cause a bulging disc in your spine. In fact, a bulging or herniated disc is a common slip and fall injury. A series of individual vertebrae make up your spinal column. Between each one of these vertebrae is a spinal disc.

  1. What Should You Do After A Slip And Fall Accident?
  • Get medical treatment without delay.
  • Report your accident.
  • Take photos of your injuries and, if possible, the site of the fall.
  • Maintain a case file.
  • Retain the clothes and shoes you wore on the day of the accident.
  • Do not accept blame or assign blame.
  • Meet with a lawyer.
  1. How Much Is Pain And Suffering Worth In A Slip And Fall?

How much pain and suffering is worth in a slip and fall case depends on the unique details of the case. It may be worth anywhere from a few thousand dollars to millions of dollars, depending on the factors involved, such as how and where you were injured and the extent of your injuries and suffering.

  1. Can You Still Sue If There is a Wet Floor Sign?

Yes, and this is so because the use of a wet floor sign does not give a property owner immunity to lawsuits or liability. It only helps reduce their liability in certain situations. You can still sue if there was a wet floor sign, but you still slipped, fell, and got injured.

  1. How Can I Prove My Pain And Suffering From A Slip And Fall?

Some documents your lawyer may use to prove that your pain and suffering exist after a slip and fall include:

  • Medical bills.
  • Medical records.
  • Medical prognosis.
  • Expert testimony.
  • Pictures of your injuries.
  • Psychiatric records.
  1. What Should You Look For After A Fall?
  • An assessment for underlying new illness.
  • A blood pressure and pulse reading when sitting, and when standing
  • Blood tests.
  • Medications review.
  • Gait and balance.
  • Vitamin D level.
  • Evaluation for underlying heart conditions or neurological conditions.
  1. Should I Get A Lawyer For Slip And Fall?

No, you do not need an attorney for a slip and fall accident. You can file a personal injury claim or lawsuit by yourself, negotiate a settlement, and even represent yourself in court. It is important to mention that slip and fall cases can be tough to litigate.

  1. What Injuries Can You Get From Falling?

Here are some of the injuries you can get from falling;

  • Traumatic brain injury.
  • Strains and sprains.
  • Broken or fractured bones.
  • Spinal injuries.
  • Bruises and cuts.
  • Stretched or torn tendons and ligaments.
  • Dislocated shoulders.
  • Injured tailbone.
  • Hip fractures
  • Thoracic injuries (injuries to the chest and organs in the chest area)
  • Back and neck injuries
  • Internal organ and nerve damage
  • Paralysis
  1. Do Most Slip And Fall Cases Settle Out Of Court?

Yes, and as a matter of fact, the vast majority of slip and fall cases will settle out of court because defendants understand that it is typically less expensive and much less time-consuming than taking the case to trial.

  1. When to Seek Medical Care after a Slip and Fall Accident

Experts recommend to seek emergency medical help within 72 hours of a slip and fall accident, but the sooner the better. If you cannot see a family doctor within 72 hours of your slip and fall you must go to an emergency room or walk-in clinic.

  1. How long does it take to recover from a slip and fall?

If you have fallen and are in recovery from a slip and fall accident, it is sometimes a long process of recovery back to healing. Depending upon the injury involved, recovery can take you from two or three weeks to several months.

  1. What Percentage Of Slip And Fall Cases Go To Trial?

Only around 5% of slip and fall cases will go to trial.

  1. What Happens If You Refuse A Settlement Offer?

Once you reject a settlement offer, the offer is off of the table. You only get one chance to accept or reject a settlement offer. If you reject it, you cannot go back and change your mind later. If the insurance company thinks its offer is fair, it might not make another one.

  1. How Long Do Slip And Fall Cases Take To Settle?

It can take anywhere from months to years to receive a settlement for a slip and fall claim depending on all the factors in a specific case.

  1. Is It Hard To Win A Slip And Fall Case?

Yes, despite their prevalence, and despite the fact that slip and falls generally result in serious injuries, slip and fall cases are difficult to win. When these types of accidents occur, it is usually because of carelessness or negligence on the part of the property owner.

  1. What Kind Of Tort Is A Slip And Fall?

A slip and fall is a personal injury kind of tort. It is a civil claim based on negligence. The purpose of a slip and fall case is to hold someone accountable for causing a personal injury accident. Specifically, a slip and fall personal injury tort is a premises liability tort.

  1. What Makes A Good Slip And Fall Case?

Someone is negligent for a slip and fall when he or she: Knows, or through the exercise of reasonable care should have known, about a hazardous condition on the property he or she owns or controls, and fails to repair, protect against, or give adequate warning of the condition.

Solomon. O'Chucks