Visitor Question

Fall in a Department Store Bathroom…

Submitted By: Michele (Rochester, NY)

On Jan 5, 2012 I entered the ladies’ bathroom in a large department store at a mall in Victor, NY.

When I went to go into the stall I noticed a brown substance on the floor and wetness. You can imagine what I thought it was, so I stepped backward to exit. As I did, I stepped onto a patch of ice that was on the floor and then slipped and fell. I hit my head and back very hard. I got up and went to get someone to help.

My head, neck and back started hurting very badly. They called an ambulance and I was transported to an area hospital where, after waiting several hours, I was treated. My discharge papers stated I had mild concussion, 2 fractured ribs, and a sprained back and shoulder. I am in the process of following up with my primary physician and receiving orthopedic treatment.

Is the store responsible for my injuries? If so, how do I pursue them for compensation? Thank you for any information you can give.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Michele,

The store may be labile for your injuries and resulting compensation for your medical bills, out of pocket expenses, lost wages, and possibly an additional amount for pain and suffering.

There are several factors which will influence the extent of liability. They are:

– The number of complaints regarding foreign substances, such as ice, dirt, grease which were previously field with management.

– The number of previously reported injuries sustained in the bathroom.

– The weather… if it was snowing or raining that day and the weather was below freezing, and it was unreasonable for management to clean up the snow and ice which may have accumulated each time another woman tracked ice, snow and rain in to the bathroom.

– If management had previous notice of foreign substances and ignored that information.

– If there were previously reported complaints from other patrons about foreign substances or dangerous conditions, and management ignored those complaints.

– If management was aware there was accumulated snow or ice in the bathroom and ignored that information.

You might consider contacting a personal injury attorney. Most will not charge for an initial consultation. Attorneys are trained and licensed to subpoena records from the management company which you would be hard pressed to locate on your own.

You should be able to recover money for your medical bills, out of pocket expenses, lost wages, and possibly an additional amount for the pan and suffering you endured.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: January 17, 2012

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