SLIP AND FALL
Call today to speak with an attorney who knows about slip and fall cases or trip and fall cases. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Matthew M. Vincent in Temecula know that owners that hold their premises open to the public owe a duty to persons who enter. This includes exercising ordinary care so as not to unnecessarily expose customers to danger or accident, and to keep aisles, passageways and other public parts of the premises in a reasonably safe condition.
Businesses must generally have actual or constructive knowledge of a dangerous condition before liability will be imposed.
This issue frequently arises in cases where a customer slips and falls due to a hazard on the floor of a business open to the public.
Constructive knowledge suffices: Lack of actual knowledge is not a defense, because an owner's affirmative duty to use care includes inspecting the premises. If the exercise of due care would have revealed the dangerous condition, defendant is liable.
If the hazard that injured the customer was created by the owner's employees, plaintiff need not prove the owner had actual or constructive knowledge.The business is vicariously liable under respondeat superior.
Somtimes the doctrine of Res ipsa loquitur (“the thing speaks for itself”) can be applied. This is an evidentiary rule that allows negligence and causation to be inferred. The doctrine is one of probability based on circumstantial evidence. To be liable under the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur the Plaintiff must show:
1) the accident is of a type that does not happen unless someone is negligent, as established by common experience or through expert testimony (Tucker v. Lombardo (1956) 47 C2d 457, 465-466, 303 P2d 1041, 1046-1047);
2) defendant had either the right to exclusive control or actual control (Newing v. Cheatham (1975) 15 C3d 351, 362, 124 CR 193, 201; Zentz v. Coca Cola Bottling Co. of Fresno (1952) 39 C2d 436, 443, 247 P2d 344, 348—control need not be absolute);
3) plaintiff did not contribute to the accident (Ybarra v. Spangard (1944) 25 C2d 486, 489, 154 P2d 687, 689; Newing v. Cheatham, supra, 15 C3d at 359, 124 CR at 199).
Call the personal injury attorneys at The Law Offices of Matthew M. Vincent in Temecula today for a free phone consultation regarding your slip and fall or trip and fall accident.