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Slip and fall at Walmart leads to premises liability suit

Posted on in Premises Liability

There&s a good chance that just about any Chicago resident reading this blog post has shopped at one of our hometown Walmart stores, either the Walmart Supercenter off North and Cicero or perhaps the Walmart Neighborhood Market in the Loop. Customers would not typically think of a trip to a major national chain store like Walmart as a particularly risky venture. However, a recent story from one of the chain&s southern U.S. locations illustrates that accidents can happen anywhere and can leave victims in a difficult situation.

The accident took place when a Walmart shopper happened to slip and fall on a wet floor where some liquid had apparently been spilled. As a result of the accident, the victim suffered pain and mental anguish; he also incurred medical expenses and lost out on wages while recovering from the accident. The victim claims that there was no warning of the dangerous condition and has recently filed a lawsuit against Walmart for failure to maintain the premises at the store.

It is important to note that not every slip and fall accident in Illinois will be something for which victims can reasonably expect to win compensation. Particularly when dealing with cases involving icy sidewalks and parking lots, the state&s laws regarding "natural accumulation" and "acts of God" protect some would-be defendants from premises liability lawsuits. However, a wet floor inside a retail store is a different matter. Commercial property owners may be held liable for accidents when they fail to clean up a wet floor promptly, or at least provide warning signs or close off the hazardous area.

Walmart in particular is a popular destination for Black Friday shoppers here in Chicago. But customers who leave retail stores with more than they bargained for -- that is, injuries due to a property owner&s negligence -- may find themselves needing to look more closely at what legal rights and options they have in the wake of a slip and fall accident.

Source: The Southeast Texas Record, "Wal-Mart named in in slip & fall lawsuit," David Yates, Nov. 19, 2013

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