Visitor Question

Broken Kneecap after Fall in Garden Department…

Submitted By: Victoria (Modesto, CA)

I fell and broke my kneecap in the garden department of a national chain retail store. I walked in the back entrance, took 20 steps and fell by the cash register. The floor was wet all the way to the register. When I walked in I saw a clerk watering plants and said hi to her. Right after that I fell and broke my right knee cap. It was a closed fracture. The clerk helped me up.

I had a bone marrow biopsy on the Friday before this happened (the following Tuesday). I was concerned the bandage was wet so I tried to make it to the bathroom using a cart to lean on, but I wasn’t able to do it. I can’t have a knee replacement because I have chronic leukemia and my doctor refuses to do the surgery. I’m still in a lot of pain and can’t walk.

Is the store liable for my pain and suffering?

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.


Dear Victoria,

The retail store certainly has some liability for the injury to your kneecap. Before the issue of Pain and Suffering can be addressed the store will have to be have been found liable for the fall itself.

Although you mention the clerk helped you up after you fell, you didn’t mention if an incident report of some type was made at or about the time of your fall.

The next issue will be whether your Leukemia exacerbated the injury to your knee cap. The Leukemic Cancer is considered a preexisting injury. If the case were to go to trial the broken kneecap would have to be separated from the Cancer.

If you are sure the broken kneecap had no relation to the Cancer, and can find an attorney who will be able to support that through the use of medical evidence, you may be at the starting point of a lawsuit against the store.

If though, a clear separation cannot be established you may be in for a long and difficult road ahead.

Learn more here: Liability in Slip and Fall Claims

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 888-972-0892.

We wish you the best with your claim,


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