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Slip and Fall Lawsuits - D'oh!

Slip and fall lawsuits occur when a person slips on a substance or item that is on the floor or ground thus causing the person to fall and get injured. If you slip and fall on someone’s property, the owner may be liable to you for damages. This means that they may have to compensate you for your injuries.

Let's say you were at a grocery store and while looking at a display, you did not see that there was a spill  on the floor. You managed to step in it and slip, dislocating your knee. There you have the beginning of a slip and fall lawsuit.

It is important to remember, however, that just because you fell at the store does not necessarily mean that the owner or operator of the place where you fell is liable to have to pay you damages.

This means that sometimes bad things happen and that the owner of the store (or their insurance company) does not necessarily need to pay damages. 

This area of the law is governed by the British Columbia Occupier's Liability Act.

They property owner is not liable if they are able to prove that they have an adequate system in place that protects the public. So, going back to the grocery store example, if they are able to say they have a policy that the staff of the store checks the floor for hazards on an ongoing basis throughout the day, that they keep track of the rounds via a checklist ensuring there are no hazards, and management is able to demonstrate this fact, then they may not be liable.

The policy itself must adequately protect the public (let us say it requires there to be a check every 15 minutes), and the policy must not only be followed, but the store owner or operator must prove that the policy was followed. If the grocery store proves this, then they may not be liable.

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A Slip and Fall Lawsuit at Hemminger Law Group Westshore

Here are some facts of a successful case we had of a client that we represented at Hemminger Law Group Westshore:

  • Our client went to the mall and slipped on an oily substance in the middle of the floor
  • The oily substance is not properly marked;
  • The oily substance was not attended to by anyone; and
  • The store employees failed to follow their procedure for checking for spills or hazards. 

Our client had a good case and got a great result.

If you wish to seek the advice of a lawyer regarding a matter where you have fallen and wonder if you will have a successful claim for your slip and fall lawsuit, contact us! 


By Val Hemminger, personal injury lawyer at Hemminger Law Group Westshore

Hemminger Law Group Westshore - Lawyers with heart! Providing Family law and Personal Injury law services to the Westshore and beyond (Langford, Westshore, Colwood, View Royal, Sooke, and Victoria)!