I was walking in a grocery store parking lot and there was a ditch in the ground on the stores property and twisted my ankle badly where I fell to the ground and bruised my face as well. It's been 2 days I am noticing my ankle has bruised up and am still limping. I did file a report with the grocery store. I also was seen at an urgent care facility because of my limp and was given an air cast. The grocery store responded to me that because they are tenets they do not maintain their property. Any advice on this is appreciated.
You should seek an attorney as soon as possible. The grocery store might be correct that the property owner is responsible for the area you fell, but there is certain evidence that needs to be preserved. Call a personal injury attorney who handles these types of cases for a free consultation.
The following information is for general-information purposes only and should not be construed as establishing an attorney-client relationship.
You should contact an attorney as soon as possible so the attorney can contact the proper owners of the complex, give notice and start to speak with the insurance company. You need to focus on your injuries and to get the proper treatment. The attorney will keep the insurance company advised of your treatment and when treatment is completed, can help negotiate the best settlement possible for you or would proceed to go to court to represent your interests and get the best result possible.
This answer is for informational purposes only. It does not establish an attorney client relationship.
There are multiple issues involved in such a case, so speaking with a lawyer who handles personal injury cases is important. Your first consultation should be free. S/He will get all the details from you, and give you sound advice.
I am licensed to practice law in Maryland and the District of Columbia; my remarks in response to your question are subject to the laws of the jurisdiction in which the legal matter is, will be, or may be resolved. Please be aware, of course, that specific questions entail specific facts as to which an experienced lawyer can give you reliable advice. Both my and other lawyers' answers to questions on Avvo are for general purposes only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship; nor should they be considered legal advice. They also are simply responses to the questions that are posed, and do not necessarily address every circumstance in your particular situation. Your best approach may be to contact a lawyer directly through Avvo, and have a consultation at which time you can provide complete details.
I agree with the other attorneys who have answered your question. I would just add that if you need help finding an attorney you have three options. 1. You can use AVVO's Find a Lawyer tool. 2. You can ask friends or relatives for recommendations. 3. You can contact your local bar association. Attorneys on this forum cannot reach out to you first - you must make the first contact. I wish you a full and fast recovery from your injuries.
Ordinarily, tenants in commercial properties with parking lots included in the lease are often responsible under the lease for any injuries occurring to their customers due to defects on the premises. Landlords insulate themselves by requiring the tenants maintain large insurance policies and imposing indemnification provisions in the leases placing the ultimate liability upon the tenant. From the injured party's standpoint, however, you can hold both the grocery store and the landlord/owner of the property liable, and in any lawsuit you would sue both. This is standard. You need to immediately get back out to the parking lot and take a host of photographs of the exact area where you fell, including bring a ruler to place across and into the hole to photograph in order to prove the width and depth of the hole. I usually do not like my clients to do this on their own as, invariably, their photos are too distant, too close, too blurry, you can't read the ruler markings, the angles don't allow clear views of the depth and width, etc. i have had multiple cases of slip and falls in parking lots where the store quickly went out after the reported injury and paved over the area so it would be too late to photograph the defect. I suggest you get a lawyer as soon as possible. Your claim depends on your injuries, and without a fracture, or a torn ligament requiring surgical repair, or a disfiguring facial scar from the wounds to your face, your claim may not ultimately be worth a lot, but you still have a viable claim. The issue in these cases always comes down to your own contributory negligence in failing to observe the hole in front of you as you were walking. Any percentage negligence on your part will defeat your right to claim any damages. That is why cases like this are often contested, or the monetary settlements offered are lower than in other types of cases.
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