Slip And Fall Accidents In Restaurants
One moment you’re enjoying a nice meal in your favorite restaurant with your family. The next, you get up to go to the restroom and find yourself crashing to the ground. Of course, the first thing to hit you is the embarrassment – you may feel like everyone in the restaurant is looking at you. Then, as if that’s not bad enough, you may next feel a wave of excruciating pain.
Consider yourself very fortunate if you’ve experienced a restaurant slip-and-fall accident and walked away unhurt. Unfortunately, many have suffered serious injuries, leading to time off work, surgeries, and even permanent disabilities. If that describes you and your slip-and-fall was caused by the restaurant’s negligence, you may be able to pursue compensation for the losses you have experienced.
Phillips Law Group is one of Arizona’s largest consumer law firms, and we’ve collected over $1 billion in total damages for our clients. Our personal injury attorneys are ready to hear your story and explain your legal options. If we take on your case, we will aggressively pursue fair compensation for your slip and fall accident.
Schedule a free, personalized case evaluation to find out whether you have a case. Reach out online or call us at (602) 222-2222 to speak to a qualified slip-and-fall accident attorney today.
The Causes of Restaurant Slip-and-Fall Accidents
Restaurants can be hazardous places. There are a lot of people milling around, food and beverages being transported from place to place, and the need for constant cleanup.
Some of the most common causes of accidents include the following:
- Food spills: Certain foods are particularly hazardous, such as sauces, dips, cooked vegetables, fatty foods, fruit, and pasta.
- Liquid spills: Beverages, soups, and melted ice cream are just a few common spills that can cause slippery patches tough to spot in a busy restaurant environment.
- Lack of signage: Cleaning spills is a regular part of life for restaurant employees. Workers should be trained to use the correct signage to keep people away from slip hazards.
- Poor lighting: Many restaurants are deliberately dimly lit to create a certain atmosphere. Yet, low lighting makes it harder to spot potential hazards and increases your chances of falling.
- Poorly maintained flooring: Snagged, torn, or curling carpeting is a recipe for disaster. Broken or loose tiles can also easily lead to serious falls.
- Parking lot hazards: Poor lighting, potholes, cracks, and loose surfaces can increase the likelihood of falls occurring in the parking lot.
To build a strong case for compensation, it’s essential to identify the cause of the slip, trip, or fall. Additionally, to prove negligence, you must be able to show that the restaurant owner knew about the hazard that caused you to fall and did not take appropriate action to correct it.
Photographs of the scene and eyewitness testimony may help you demonstrate that negligence was the cause of your injuries.
The Impact of Restaurant Slip-and-Fall Accidents
Slip-and-fall accidents can have very serious consequences. Some common injuries include broken bones, sprains, strains, and cuts. At times, these injuries heal quickly, but sadly, in some cases, broken bones can lead to ongoing pain due to nerve damage or joint deterioration.
Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that falls cause nearly 50 percent of hospitalizations related to traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). TBIs can lead to short-term health problems and, in severe cases, permanent disability. The risks are higher in older people and those taking blood-thinning medications.
After any fall at a restaurant, seeking immediate medical attention is vital. You may feel fine at the time, but some injuries do not become painful until later. Delaying in seeking medical attention could detrimentally affect your personal injury claim.
The other party’s lawyer may try to argue that your injuries were not the result of your restaurant slip-and-fall accident. Getting yourself checked out immediately ensures that you have medical evidence to support your claims.
What Damages Could I Receive?
Every restaurant slip and fall case is unique, and the amount of damages you could win depends on several factors, including the severity of your injuries and the long-term impact on your life. Phillips Law Group has achieved settlements of up to $2.25 million for slip and fall cases.
Serious slip and fall injuries can have a devastating impact on your finances. You may be able to pursue economic damages to compensate you for the following:
- Medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Caretaker costs
- Adaptations to your home
- Lost earnings
- Loss of future earning potential
Regrettably, severe injuries can take a significant toll on our mental health. According to Charles Bombardier, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and professor at the University of Washington:
- One-third of people who face a major orthopedic injury suffer from major depression
- More than half of people with a TBI will suffer from major depression
Ongoing physical and mental health conditions may make it impossible to enjoy family life as you did before. Therefore, you may be entitled to non-economic damages to compensate you for the pain and suffering you have experienced.
That’s why it’s essential to talk to a qualified and experienced Arizona slip-and-fall accident attorney. He or she can calculate the true impact of your restaurant fall injuries, helping you to avoid accepting a lowball settlement offer. Your personal injury lawyer can also battle with insurance companies to secure fair compensation, even representing you in court if necessary.
Liability in Restaurant Slip and Fall Cases
Determining the liable party in a restaurant slip and fall case can be challenging as there may be more than one potential source of damages. This could include:
- Property owner: If the property owner was aware of hazardous conditions and did not take action to address the problem, he or she could be liable
- Restaurant owner: If he or she failed to correct the hazard or train and manage the employees effectively, he or she could be liable
In Arizona, restaurant operators must follow the R9-8 Food, Recreational, and Institutional Sanitation standards. This law, under Outdoor Areas 6-102.11 Surface Characteristics, states: “The outdoor walking and driving areas shall be surfaced with concrete, asphalt, or gravel or other materials that have been effectively treated to minimize dust, facilitate maintenance, and prevent muddy conditions.”
What if the restaurant owner does not comply with this, and other relevant laws? Hazards caused by negligence may lead to slip-and-fall accidents. If you hire a Phillips Law Group slip and fall attorney, he or she will thoroughly investigate your case and discover the best legal options to pursue.
Take the First Step on the Road to Justice
A slip-and-fall accident can start a chain of events that change your life forever. Yet, rather than feeling overwhelmed, you can entrust your case to a compassionate yet tenacious personal injury attorney.
Phillips Law Group’s attorneys understand your pain. We have represented over 155,000 clients over almost 30 years and have a great track record of success. No matter where you live in the United States, we’re here to help you.
There’s no need to figure out your next step alone. Call us at (602) 222-2222 to discuss your case with a qualified personal injury attorney, completely free of charge. Our lines are open 24/7, so please don’t hesitate to make that call.
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