I often get calls in my Pennsylvania Personal Injury practice from people who have been injured in slip and fall accidents in grocery stores. They inevitably want to know whether they have a legal claim for compensation as a result of the grocery store slip and fall.
The answer depends. Some people have valid slip and fall cases and some don’t.
In Pennsylvania, in order to have a valid legal claim after a slip and fall, the injured person must be able to prove that the grocery store was Negligent. Negligence is a legal term that essentially means carelessness. For a grocery store to be found Negligent, that means the store or its employees did something that created an unneccessary hazard or failed to do something that would have eliminated an unneccessary hazard.
In more practical terms, to have a good slip and fall case against a Pennsylvania grocery store, an injured person needs evidence that the store or its employees created a hazard OR if someone else created the hazard, that it existed for such a period of time that the store should have noticed and eliminated it.
To use concrete examples, here are two cases, one that I accepted and won compensation for a client and another that I rejected because I didn’t think that Negligence could be proven.
In Case 1, a grocery store employee was stocking shelves with soda and dropped a 12 pack. The employee cleaned up the spill, but left a small puddle of clear soda on the floor. An hour later, my client slipped in the puddle and hurt her knee. I took the case, filed a lawsuit and the case eventually settled with the grocery store paying compensation to my client. The store was Negligent because its employee carelessly created a slip and fall hazard that cause injury to my client.
In case 2, my prospective client slipped and fell on grapes on a grocery store floor. He had no ideas how the grapes got spilled, whether an employee or customer dropped them, or how long they were on the floor before his fall. Because of this, I rejected Case 2. Proving Negligence would be very difficult because the grocery store had records of regular safety inspections and could argue that the grapes could have been spilled just minutes before the fall and it would be unreasonable to say that it was Negligent for not noticing and cleaning them up immediately.
So, grocery store slip and falls can be good cases or bad. It just depends on what proof of Negligence can be found.
Tim Rayne is a Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyer who regularly handles grocery store Slip and Fall cases. For over 20 years, Tim has been helping injured victims of Slip and Fall accidents understand their legal rights and receive fair compensation from insurance companies. For a Free Evaluation of your Pennsylvania Slip and Fall case, contact Tim at 610 840 0124 or [email protected] or check out his website at www.timraynelaw.com.