Walmart stores are known for their “Big Box” status – similar to Sam’s Club, Costco, or Home Depot. 24 hours a day, Walmart shoppers can find almost anything, from fast food and groceries to auto parts, electronics, and even garden equipment. Not all of these big box stores are perfectly maintained, and the mix of all of those different retail goods and services under one giant roof can lead to hazardous conditions where customers or employees can have a dangerous slip and fall accident.
Retailers of any size are required by law to maintain their stores and parking lots in clean and safe conditions to protect their employees and the public from injury or death. Walmart stores are immense and open 24 hours a day. This makes maintenance a challenge and also costs money and employee time. When management is negligent by not remaining aware of maintenance issues – or purposely cuts corners to save money – slip and fall accidents are more likely to occur.
A slip and fall accident may be caused by liquid on the floor, slippery items like crushed fruit, greasy spots from fast food preparation, small items such as spilled dog kibble or cat litter, or even boxes or signage left on the floor. Hazardous conditions such as these should be spotted, designated as hazardous with a caution sign, and thoroughly cleaned up within a reasonable amount of time from the spill. If this does not happen, then the store management can be found to have been negligent, failing to properly maintain, inspect, and operate their store in a reasonably safe condition, and failing to warn approaching customers of hazards.
A customer or employee who suffers injury from such an accident may very well have a personal injury case on their hands, and may sue for damages. But Walmart is not only a big store, it is a giant corporation, with an extensive legal department and customer claims division – so anyone dealing with Walmart in a legal situation should immediately seek the services of an attorney.
A personal injury attorney knows what evidence, information, and types of witness testimony are needed in order to win a slip and fall case against a giant like Walmart. They can demand surveillance videos of the area in which the fall occurred, request copies of maintenance records from Walmart itself as well as any maintenance company who did repairs on faulty equipment. The attorney can also deal with the claims department, medical personnel and insurance agencies, so the only thing you have to worry about is healing from your injuries.
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident in Walmart or any other big box store, you should never try to get compensation for your injuries on your own. Even when it is clearly the corporation’s fault and they are apologetic and offering to pay you immediately, you have to remember that their goal is to pay out the least amount of compensation possible for an injury. They often succeed doing this because the victim does not understand their rights and what they actually may be entitled to. Even worse, the victim may not realize the severity of their injuries till days later – disk issues in the spine often go undetected at first.