Time is an issue here. If there was still "ice" that remained unmelted, you may have an incident where the store owner did not have enough notice of time to clean up the mess. Water on the floor that is dirty or has other foot prints or shopping cart tracks through it demonstrates a hazard that "should have been spotted and cleaned up...was there long enough to establish liability". If your spill stll had ice within it...tough case. Also have to cross an open and obvious argument.
Mr. Donaldson is correct. In most jurisdictions, you must be able to prove that the substance on the floor was either placed there by a store employee, that the store knew about it, or that the store should have known about it had it been paying proper attention. The fact that there was still ice in the water indicates that the water was there for only a short while - not long enough to melt the ice that was spilt with it. I would consult with your lawyer to be sure, but I suspect that it is the liability aspect that is causing your case to drag on.
The short answer is maybe. In any snow and ice case we look to see what the condition was like at the time you fell. If it was the middle of a blizzard and nobody had time to clear the parking lot in the middle of the night, it's not looking good to be able to prove that the owner of the property should have taken steps to clear the lot of snow and ice. The key to proving liability in a snow and ice case is whether the owner of the property knew of a dangerous condition and failed to timely act to correct it. This is called 'notice'. If the owner didn't know about a dangerous condition, how can he be held responsible for your injuries? He won't be. But, what if the icy condition existed for a few days or weeks? Everybody who lived nearby always saw the ice and nobody ever salted or sanded the ice. In that situation we would argue that the owner of the property knew, or should have known, that there was a dangerous and icy condition on his property
The materials available at this web site are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. Use of and access to this Web site or any of the e-mail links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship between Howard Roitman, Esq. and the user or browser. The opinions expressed at or through this site are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the firm or any individual attorney.
Sign up to receive a 3-part series of useful information and advice about personal injury law.