The holiday season is here, and that means the holiday shopping season is here as well. Between now and the end of the year, millions of people will head out to malls, supermarkets and various stores to buy the things they need for the holidays.
With so many people out shopping, it can be a good time to explain the circumstances under which storeowners can be held liable for accidents on their property, including slipping, tripping and falling accidents.
Premises liability laws
Broadly speaking, property owners can be held liable for injuries suffered by people legally permitted to be on the premises as a result of a hazardous condition.
More specifically, certain elements must be in place to make a case for compensation. These elements include:
- The existence of a dangerous condition
- A duty by the property owner to keep his or her property safe
- Failure of the property owner to properly address and/or warn others of the dangerous condition
- Damages suffered as a result of the accident
Possible defenses to claims
Even if you feel sure that you have suffered because of an accident caused by the negligence of a property owner, you should be prepared for them to try to avoid liability.
In mustering a defense, property owners might:
- Blame you for the accident
- Argue that they indeed took the steps necessary to address the hazard
- Challenge the extent of your injuries
- Deny liability due to your status on the property
- Claim that they could not have reasonably known about the existence of the hazardous condition
Protecting yourself if you are injured while shopping
If you suffer a slip-and-fall or other shopping-related injuries during the holidays, then you would be wise to protect yourself and learn about your legal options. You can do this by taking pictures of the hazard, reaching out to witnesses, and getting medical help. You can also work with an attorney to build a claim and take action to seek the compensation you may deserve.
Call the injury lawyers of Cavanaugh & Thickens
If you’ve been injured in a slip-and-fall or a trip-and-fall, call the lawyers of Cavanaugh & Thickens at 803-888-2200 or contact us online.