I grabbed what I needed and continued shopping. The guy that had been working near me was on was gone, as I reached the end of the isle I slip in a large puddle of water. After the incident, the guy that had been working on the isle I was on was walking toward me with a "clean-up" kit. The puddle must have been new. I was surprised that he didn't put up a sign or just grab another employee to warn customers of the spill, there was an employee on almost every isle stocking shelf's. When I got out my phone to take pictures him and his supervisor got irritated, then as I walked away they both started laughing. I did fill out an accident report. Now, I caught myself and didn't fall all the way to the floor, but must have aggravated an old injury, now a week later I keep having back spasms!
Personal Injury Lawyer
Get all medical care you need. Contact a local injury lawyer. These cases can be hard, as you usually have to show that the employee caused the water to be there (possibly that happened in your case, if few customers and lots of ees stocking), or that the water was due otherwise to the stores negligence (eg leaky plumbing, cooler, etc), or that ee had actual knowledge of water sifficiently before you walked over, such that he could have warned or cleaned, or that the procedures for inspecting floors was inadeaquate in policy or execution. They may have video which needs to be preserved. that could show how and when the water got there, and whether ees had knowledge (eg by walking thru area before you fell). The problem is that unless you have a sig injury it may not be worth the time and effort in filing suit and doing the discovery that may be reqd to prove the case, unless the store concedes laibility (which rarely happens).
Animal Attack and Dog Bite Attorney
You may want to go get checked out by your doctor. This will be a difficult case since your body did not actually impact the floor. In any event, get a copy of the accident report and speak to a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
This information does not constitute am attorney / client relationship and is just a general answer to the question posed with the limited facts available. There is no substitute to a consultation with an attorney licensed in your State.
I agree with the others that this is a difficult case, but not necessarily impossible, and may be worth pursuing if you have real injury. A local attorney can give you the best advice.
The requirement here is that you be able to demonstrate "notice"...that is, that there was not only a negligent condition, i.e. the water on the floor, but that management knew or should have known, of its presence. You describe the "puddle" as large, but a moment later say it must have been "new". Logic suggests a large puddle of water didn't get there suddenly and as you note shelves were being stocked all over the store; therefore it is my opinion that you have strong prima facie evidence that the notice requirement is satisfied. That you did not fall all the way to the floor is something the other side (as memory serves, Albertson's is self insured) will use to try to minimize your injury(ies) however you should get checked out medically and see what is objective in terms of your condition.
You should obtain needed medical care and treatment immediately and follow the doctor's advice. Do not give any statement to the adverse party or insurance company nor grant them access to any medical records. Photograph the injuries and the damage done to any property. Contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible so that you can protect your rights. You may also find it helpful to review the Legal Guides I have published on Avvo.com dealing with many of the issues you are now facing. The Guides can be accessed through my profile page on Avvo.com.
If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.
Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.
This ans. does not create an attorney/client relationship.
Personal Injury Lawyer
You do not have any case unless you can prove this happened. Were there any witnesses or was a formal report filed? Do you still have your purchase receipt?
At this point, the most important task is for you to immediately hire a lawyer.
He/she must immediately demand that all video surveillance of the slip area is preserved for long periods of time, both before and after you slipped. This could be the key to your case.
My office is right near the Albertson's where I suspect you slipped...