Compensation for a fall caused by kids in a national chain store?
My mom was walking in the aisle of a well-known, national chain store. There were children playing in an aisle, and a large, adolescent boy ran backwards as she was passing and ran into her, toppling her to the ground. She screamed, and the boy ran away.
She suffered a fractured shoulder, two torn tendons, and a large hematoma on her leg, among other wounds. This caused her months of pain, sleepless nights, numerous doctor and specialists' appointments and physical therapy.
She went back and forth with the store's insurance department, pleading her case and asking for her medical bills to be reimbursed. They have refused any liability. They apparently even have the incident on tape. What recourse does she have? Thanks.
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ANSWER for "Compensation for a fall caused by kids in a national chain store?":
For the national chain store to be liable for your mom’s slip and fall injury and resulting damages will require her to show the store owner or management acted negligently, and that negligence was the direct and proximate cause of her injuries and related damages.
Learn more about liability in slip and fall claims here.
From the facts you present, there doesn't appear to be any obvious evidence of store owner or management negligence.
Unfortunately, at this point you do not have a legal right to see a copy of the store video. Nor do you have a legal right to a copy of any incident report which may have been completed at the time of your mother’s slip and fall injury. Only after filing a lawsuit will your attorney be able to subpoena the video or store incident report.
To prove the store owner's or management's negligence will require you to show they knew, or should have known there were children playing in the aisles, and as a result, posed a real danger to customers such as your mom.
Moreover, your mother will have to show the store owner or management knew the adolescent who ran past your mom, or other adolescents had a history of running through the aisles, causing danger to customers, and in spite of that history failed to take corrective action.
At this point, your mom’s personal injury claim against the store does not appear viable. However, instead she may have a legitimate personal injury claim against the adolescent's parents. Unfortunately, identifying the adolescent will be quite difficult at this point.
Because the adolescent is apparently a minor, his or her parents’ may be legally liable for the negligence of their child. If you can identify and locate the adolescent and his or her parents, you have a very legitimate legal right to demand they reimburse your mother for her medical bills and resulting damages.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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