Restroom door cut my face...

by S
(Eugene, Oregon, U.S.A.)

After using the restroom at a supermarket, as I stepped on the mat reaching for the door, the mat bunched up, causing me to slide into the door. This resulted in a gash on the side of my face. The cut is approximately an 1/8 inch long, while the width is about that of an ear bud wire.

I'm trying to get an idea of what is a reasonable amount to expect for this injury. I'm not working and have no hospital bills. I could have used maybe 2 butterfly stitches, but was told to keep it clean, and if it gets yellow around the edges to go back to the doctor, that was it. What's this claim worth?

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Restroom door cut my face...":

S (Eugene, Oregon, USA):

Liability is clear. The supermarket had a legal duty to make the bathroom safe for those who were legally allowed to use it. The supermarket might have a legal defense if they can show they had an employee check the bathroom on a reasonably consistent basis, and the rug bunched up between bathroom checks.

Unfortunately, even in the face of probable liability, it appears you sustained no compensable damages. Damages can include medical bills, out of pocket expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering. For you to be able to recover compensation from the supermarket or its insurance company, you must have something to be compensated for.

This can all change if your injury results in permanent scarring to your face. Permanent scarring is a legitimate and compensable damage.

You would be best served by seeking a medical opinion from your physician or a plastic surgeon. If they conclude you will require plastic surgery, your next step will be to seek the advice and counsel of a personal injury attorney.

Time is of the essence. In the State of Oregon, a victim has two years from the date of injury to either settle their claim or file a lawsuit. This time period is referred to as the statute of limitations. Be vigilant of that time limit.

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,

Judge Calisi

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