A Premises Liability Case – Trip and Fall
We helped a lady who tripped and fell at a national clothing boutique in Santa Fe, New Mexico breaking her shoulder. It was a premises liability case. One of the clothes racks was set up in an unreasonably dangerous way. The end of the clothes rack was positioned next to a step down that had no warnings, markings or barricades to alert a customer. A customer flipping through and looking at clothes does not expect a step down at the end of a close rack. This is an unreasonably dangerous condition on the premises which the owner operator has a duty to eliminate if they knew or should have known of the dangerous condition.
Through diligent discovery and investigation, we were able to find five (5) people who fell before our client at the exact same place and in the exact same way. We also found one that fell afterwards. Our investigation discovered that the defendant’s incident report from the first incident exposed the defendant’s negligence and the defendant’s knowledge of the danger. The store’s incident report had the question, How can we make sure an incident like this never occurs again. The incident report stated, We need to rope off or barricade the step with a rope or fence.
Even after multiple incidents the defendant continued to fail to follow its own recommendations to prevent others from falling. We were able to show that the defendant put profits over the safety and well being of its customers. Its critical to fully investigate a premises liability case as defendants will often hide, delay or try not to produce prior incidents or any other documents that expose their knowledge of the danger on their premises. In this case, we had to file two (2) Motions to Compel and convince the Judge to Order the defendant to produce documents that we believed existed. The defendant was never going to willing produce the evidence. Once we got the documents, the case was favorably settled.
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, call us for a free consultation today