Charlotte, NC Slip and Fall Lawyer
While retail stores are required to follow strict safety measures, slip and fall accidents can still occur. When you step into a retail store, you assume that your safety is a priority. However, accidents can happen, and it’s essential to understand your rights and responsibilities if you find yourself in such a situation. Our friends at Schehr Law, PLLC, and their experienced slip and fall lawyers, can attest to the importance of being aware of the potential hazards in retail stores. In this guide, we’ll explore what shoppers should be aware of when it comes to slip and fall accidents in retail settings.
1. The Duty Of Care Owed By Retail Stores
Retail stores have a legal obligation, known as a “duty of care,” to provide a reasonably safe environment for their customers. This duty of care includes doing the following:
- Regularly inspecting the premises for hazards.
- Taking prompt action to address and correct known hazards.
- Providing warnings to customers about potential dangers.
2. Common Causes Of Slip And Fall Accidents
Some slip and fall accidents are more common than others, including:
- Wet or slippery floors, often resulting from spills, leaks, or recently cleaned surfaces.
- Uneven or damaged flooring, such as loose tiles, torn carpets, or broken floorboards.
- Obstructed walkways with items, displays, or debris blocking the path.
- Poor lighting that makes it difficult to see potential hazards.
- Lack of warning signs or barriers to alert shoppers to dangers.
3. Documenting The Accident
Should you experience a slip and fall accident in a retail store, you’ll want to do the following:
- Report the incident to store personnel and ask for an incident report to be filed.
- Document the scene, including taking photos of the hazard, your injuries, and the area where the accident occurred.
- Obtain contact information from any witnesses who saw the accident.
- Seek medical attention immediately, even if your injuries seem minor.
4. Seek Legal Representation
Speaking with an attorney is recommended follow a slip and fall. Attorneys can guide you through the legal process, including gathering evidence, negotiating with insurance companies, and pursuing legal action if necessary.
5. The Role Of Comparative Fault
Shoppers should be aware that, in some cases, liability for a slip and fall accident may be shared between the store and the injured party. North Carolina follows a pure comparative fault system, meaning that even if you are partially at fault for the accident, you can still pursue a claim. However, one drawback is that the percentage of your settlement or court award can be reduced.
6. The Importance Of Timely Action
It’s essential to take action following a slip and fall accident. Evidence can deteriorate, witnesses may become harder to locate, and legal deadlines can pass. Consulting with a slip and fall lawyer promptly after an accident ensures that your rights are protected, and you can pursue the compensation you deserve.
While retail stores are convenient, that doesn’t mean slip and falls still can’t happen. Retail stores owe a duty of care to their customers, and if that duty is breached, you have the right to seek compensation for your injuries. By understanding your rights, documenting the incident, and seeking legal representation when needed, you can protect your interests and work towards a fair resolution of your case.