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What are my legal rights when hurt in a supermarket?

Auburn, GA |

I slipped and fell on my knee in a grocery store due to chicken juice being on the floor. I went to the emergency room where they took X rays of my knee and foot. They have advised me to stay off my foot and referred me to orthopedic. I have missed work because of this accident.

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You have a potential premises liability claim. Under Georgia law, premise owners owe the duty to exercise ordinary care to keep its premises and approaches safe for its invitees (sch as yourself, a customer). In order to be successful, you need to show that the store owner had superior knowledge of the hazard, which can be shown by either an employee being in the vicinity of the hazard long enough so that he/she should have noticed the situation, or by not following their own internal inspection procedures which, had they done so, they would have discover the hazard. You are incurring medical bills for the ER, and will likely incur additional medical bills as a result of seeing the orthopedist so you are entitled to recover for those amounts. Additionally, as your injury is causing you to miss work, you have a lost wages claim. And finally, you have a claim for the pain and suffering you are feeling as a result of this injury. You really need to speak with a personal injury attorney about this. One time-critical action which must be done asap is for your attorney or yourself to send a spoliation of evidence letter to the store so they won't tape over the security video which may show the entire event. Follow up on whatever medical care your treating physicians recommend, and again, under the few facts you have provided I strongly recommend you consult with an experienced personal injury attorney, and I would be more than happy to provide you with a free consultation and review. Also, politely but firmly refuse to talk to any representative of the store or its insurer until after you have consulted with an attorney. Good luck.

Matthew Chase Swanson

Matthew Chase Swanson


Very well said.


See a local personal injury attorney.If you have pictures, that would be helpful. Most importantly, do not speak to anyone at the supermarket or their insurance carrier, let your attorney do that.


Most slip and falls result in no legal recovery. To collect damages, you have to prove that the store was negligent and had actual knowedge of the condition, and that you could not have seen it to avoid it.

Having said that, you need to see a lawyer within 48 hours of the incident, so the lawyer can investigate, and also preserve any store videos. If you have a case, be prepared for it to take a long time and be difficult. If there is not a good case, the lawyer will tell you.

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Slip and fall cases are very complicated and very fact specific. Liability turns on whether the store knew or should have known about the chicken juice, and whether you knew, or would have known had you exercised reasonable care, that it was there. There are other factors involved, but that's the gist.

As far as how to proceed, you should have hopefully informed the store of the incident and completed an incident report. Don't be too specific as they're trained to ask specific questions that will hurt your claim. Don't talk to anyone from the store or their claims department. Get treated for your injuries and consult a personal injury attorney asap. Good luck

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Based on your question it appears that you have a case under GA law if in fact you slipped on chicken grease and if the store knew or should have known that the hazard was present. It is important to speak to a lawyer in the very near future so that any video evidence taken by store cameras is preserved and not thrown away by the store. I would consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Feel free to call our firm or any other qualified AVVO rated attorney.


Consult with a local personal injury attorney who can collect and evaluate all of the necessary facts to see if there is a viable claim.


If your orthopod determines you have sustained an injury, have a local personal injury lawyer investigate whether there was negligence


There's no doubt that cases like this can be complicated from a legal standpoint. I agree that you need to meet with an attorney ASAP to sort through the facts and issues. Preserving any evidence that may exist related to your accident could make or break your case. Begin investigation through an experience personal injury attorney right now and good luck to you!

*Attorney Thomas Andrew Miller (678-907-3600) provided this Reply which is intended to be helpful to the Asker and the Avvo Community, but it does not constitute legal advice and does not create any attorney-client relationship. You are urged to seek the advice of an attorney or, in some cases, a tax professional, before taking any action. **Was this Answer helpful? Please click to give the Answer a Helpful Vote or make it the Best Answer!

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