Visitor Question

Slip and Fall, Commercial Property…

Submitted By: Sheldon (MS)

My friend slipped and fell on some black ice and sprained her back. She believes it is privately owned property (a casino). I was just wondering does she have a case?

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 Sheldon,

When a person slips, falls and injures themselves on property (whether public or privately owned), these cases are called premises liability.

The problem with this case, however is that the cause of her fall is listed as “black ice.”

Property owners CAN be liable for injures that occur on their property, but there are requirements. The property owner must make reasonable inspections and warn of those known hazards that are “within their control.” A leaky roof that leads to pooled water which causes a hazard is an example of something within a landowner’s control to both fix and warn.

Black ice, however is something that we call an Act of God. These are things outside the owner’s control, meaning that even the most diligent landowner cannot stop Acts of God such as rain, sleet, snow, floods, or black ice, or stop the injuries that occasioned by such condition.

Your friend will not know unless she submits a claim to the casino or whomever owns the property, so there is no harm in doing so. I would venture to guess, however that such a claim will be denied for the aforementioned reasons.

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, 2011

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