New Jersey business owners owe shoppers and other invitees a duty to take reasonable actions to maintain the safety of their businesses. When a business owner breaches this duty, a victim of a slip and fall accident can file a legal claim against the owner and other parties that are responsible for the accident to recover damages.
What causes a slip and fall?
Generally, slip and fall accidents in New Jersey are caused by a dangerous or hazardous condition on the store premises. Common dangerous conditions include:
- Broken stairs or staircase railing
- Icy sidewalk
- Damaged carpeting
- Debris on the floor
- Uneven flooring
- Slippery floors
- Broken shelving
- Poor lighting
- Obstructions in aisles
When is a store owner liable for a slip and fall?
Store owners who do not take reasonable steps to protect their customers from injury could be liable for a customer’s slip-and-fall injury. Store owners may be liable for:
- Failure to conduct reasonable inspections of the premises.
- Failure to take remedy defective or hazardous conditions on the property.
- Failure to warn the customer of the dangerous condition.
- Failure to properly supervise employees.
- Failure to provide adequate training to employees.
Recovering damages following a slip and fall
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, you will need to establish that the owner had actual notice of the condition. If the owner did not have actual notice, you will have to show that the owner had constructive notice, or that a reasonable owner in the same circumstances would have known about the condition. Generally, if an owner had received complaints about the defects in the past or the defect was present for a long period of time, the court will determine that the owner had constructive notice, and therefore, should have known about the condition.
Proving slip and fall liability can be challenging without an experienced attorney on your side. If you consult with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after your accident, your attorney can help file your premises liability lawsuit and come up with a plan to prove the store owner’s negligence.