Visitor Question

Injured by Employee at a Grocery Store…

Submitted By: Maryanne (Rehoboth, MA)

I was at a grocery store shopping. As I was walking toward the produce section an employee seemed to come out of nowhere and slammed into me. I was shocked for a moment as I had not expected it. She was obviously in a hurry. It was no minor “bump”, it was a shoulder to shoulder slam.

I’ve previously had neck injuries and once again I was feeling that stabbing pain with tightness running down into my shoulder blades. It’s been 3 months and I’m still hurting. I am also getting headaches stemming from the back of my neck up into my head. At times my eye hurts. It seems to be at its worst when I wake up in the morning.

Is this a legal dead end because there was no car involved? I am currently seeing a chiropractitioner once a week.

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 Maryanne,

It is not a “dead issue” but certainly one which will be difficult to successfully pursue. To have an effective claim against the store you would have had to report the “shoulder slam” at or about the time of the injury. It appears you failed to do that. Next you would have to have sought medical care within a reasonable time after the injury. You failed to do that as well.

The next problem you are facing is what is referred to as a “pre-existing injury”. It is always difficult to establish when pre-existing injuries end and the new injuries begin. Making that distinction can only be accomplished through medical examinations, usually through MRI’s (Medical Resonance Imaging) and CAT Scans (Computer Axial Tomography).

At this point your best bet would be to consult with an orthopedic surgeon. She will be able to make the proper diagnosis and prognosis. Regrettably chiropractic documentation may not be sufficient to support your claim.

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: October 13, 2011

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