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Falling Merchandise Injuries in Florida

mallFalling merchandise accidents typically take place when products, boxes, and other items fall from shelves and cause injury to a customer. If you or someone close to you has been injured due to falling merchandise, it is important to seek the help of a qualified premises liability attorney who can assess the merits of your case. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, we will work diligently to help you get the compensation you deserve for your harm.

Merchandise can fall from shelves for a number of reasons, such as being improperly stacked, stacked too high, defective racking, defective pallets, failure to warn customers of dangerous areas, and more. Big department stores routinely receive complaints about falling merchandise. In fact, Wal-Mart revealed that 17,000 falling merchandise cases were filed against the company between 1989 and 1994. However, superstores continue to stack merchandise vertically as a cost-saving tactic.

Storeowners have a legal responsibility to keep their stores in reasonably safe conditions in order not to cause harm to customers. This responsibility includes keeping aisles clear. Under premises liability law, stores have a legal duty to protect their customers from falling merchandise. Otherwise, the store likely will be liable for any resulting harm.

In order to recover damages, the plaintiff would have to show that the storeowner was negligent. Negligence refers to the failure to take reasonable care in one’s actions. Reasonable care is defined as how a prudent person would act in the same or similar circumstances. As a result, what is considered “reasonable” will vary depending on the circumstances. For example, a storeowner who was aware of a faulty shelf and continued to stock items on it would not be considered reasonable. If those items subsequently fell and injured a customer, the storeowner probably would be liable for the customer’s injuries.

Falling merchandise can cause a variety of injuries, including broken bones, head injuries, cuts, scrapes, bruises, spinal cord injuries, or even death. Depending on the nature of the plaintiff’s injuries, he or she may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, therapy bills, pain and suffering, lost income, and more.

It is important to note that individuals hurt by falling merchandise only have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit, known as the statute of limitations. In the state of Florida, a plaintiff has four years from the date of the accident to file a civil lawsuit. If the plaintiff fails to file within this time frame, the court will likely refuse to hear the case.

If you or someone close to you has been injured due to falling merchandise, we can help. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, our Miami premises liability attorneys have years of experience handling these claims and can put this knowledge to use in your case. We are here to answer your questions and address your concerns. We proudly represent clients throughout South Florida. For a free, confidential consultation, do not hesitate to call us at 1-877-499-HURT (4878) or contact us online.

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Florida Appellate Court Rules that Plaintiff’s Motion to Amend Complaint Must be Reconsidered, South Florida Injury Lawyer Blawg, July 8, 2015