I slipped and fell in a parking lot. Who is at fault?
Author: Attorney Jason Macri
Walking through a parking lot is something that many people do multiple times per day. The vast majority of the time, we make it to our destination with no problem and without any concern. There are many potential dangerous conditions in a parking lot however. Broken parking bumpers, oil slicks, craters, rocks and other debris are just some of the potential hazards. Who would be at fault if you became injured because of one of these hazards?
The truth is that some people walk through a parking lot without paying much attention. They may be texting someone on their cell phone or looking through their pocketbook. They may be more concerned with possibly getting hit by another vehicle and less concerned with that broken-up asphalt covered by all those leaves. Whatever the case, people sometimes get hurt in parking lots and, as long as the person is doing what any other reasonable person would be doing at the time, they will probably have a successful injury case.
The key is to find out who owns and/or maintains the parking lot. Ultimately they will be liable for your injuries. Don’t assume that Publix is liable for your injuries just because you were walking through the parking lot of your local Publix at the time of your injury. It is possible that Publix leases that space from another company and, depending on the agreement between Publix and that company, one of them will probably defend the other if you make a claim for injury.
Make sure to photograph the condition that caused your fall. Once the Defendant finds out that you have made claim, they may fix the problem. If you have no photos or other evidence, it may be extremely difficult to prove what caused you to fall. If you are badly injured, make sure to call 911 right away. Ask for an ambulance. When they arrive, show them what caused you to fall so the condition can be indicated in your emergency medical records. It will certainly help your claim if the emergency responders can see with their own eyes what caused your injury.
If you were headed into a store at the time of your injury, notify the store of what caused you to become injured. That way they can notify whoever is responsible for the condition and may even go out into the parking lot and place warning cones or other warning devices. It should be everyone’s main concern to make sure nobody else gets injured by this dangerous condition.
If you have been injured in a parking lot because of a dangerous condition, give us a call. We will go out and gather up the evidence for you. Depending on the circumstances, we may want to hire an expert to render an opinion about the dangerous condition and how it affected you. We will make sure to go after the appropriate Defendant to get them to acknowledge their negligence and get you the compensation you deserve.