Visitor Question

Cut My Finger While Looking Through Merchandise…

Submitted By: Fernando (Whittier, CA)

I was looking through a bin of merchandise at a 99 cent store and cut the top of my right index finger on a four inch blade. The blade shouldn’t have been sitting openly in the bin. The manager stated that it was probably something they sold that fell out of the package.

I have been out of work for three weeks. I required four stitches and need to let the wound heal properly because I am an embalmer and I work around body fluids.

Even though I use gloves it is proven that as the gloves get wet they eventually allow fluids to pass through to the hand. I also use my right hand to suture incisions. My finger tip still hurts if I apply pressure to it.

It seems to me like the store is liable for my injury and resulting costs. How can I get reimbursed for my injury and the time I lost from work? Thank you.

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 Fernando,

You pose an interesting question. It is though difficult for me to understand why you are concerned about the

possibility of transferring some of your bodily fluids to a dead person. After all he is dead isn’t he?

In any event, the store should be liable for your injuries and resulting medical bills. Hopefully you were able to get the manager’s name. It is possible he completed some sort of an “Incident Report”. Contact him again. Remind him of your injury and explain as a result you endured pain and suffering, lost wages, and medical bills.

Tell him you want to be compensated for those amounts. He will probably need to consult with his superiors. Wait for a couple of weeks after you speak with the manager. If you haven’t heard from anyone with authority to compensate you for your injuries you may have to consider legal action.

If necessary you can file a case against the store in Small Claims Court. In the State of California the jurisdictional limit, or “maximum amount” a person can sue for is $7,500 dollars. If you believe you should be compensated for that amount or less that would be your best choice.

Learn more here: Retail Store Injury 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) 647-2490.

Best of luck!


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One comment on “Cut My Finger While Looking Through Merchandise…

  1. Fernando says:

    I am not worried about transferring my body fluids. I am worried about body fluids from the deceased coming in contact with my wound.

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