Injury Lawyer for Slip and Fall Accidents at Aéropostale
Aeropostale has a store in nearly every mall or shopping center in the United States. If you suffered an injury in a slip and fall accident at Aeropostale, you probably did not enter the store thinking that might encounter a dangerous situation that would cause you harm. However, like any other retail store, Aeropostale has the potential for slip, trip, and fall hazards almost anywhere. If the employees or the property owner are responsible for the conditions that caused your accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses.
How Do Slip and Fall Accidents Happen at Aeropostale?
Retailers like Aeropostale do the most business through big sales and seasonal shopping. When foot traffic is heavy, employees often find it difficult to keep up with safety checks and regular cleaning. Customers continuously pick up and put down clothing throughout the store, and items left on the ground become a slip or trip hazard. Some other potential safety hazards in an Aeropostale store include:
- Poor or damaged lighting
- Exposed cords or wires
- Stock carts left in the aisles
- Hangers left on the floor
- Spills left from customers that brought in outside drinks
- Garments left behind in the dressing rooms
- Torn carpet or rugs
- Uneven flooring
- Wet floors from mopping left without proper signage
- Loose railings or damaged stairs
- Precariously stacked displays or improperly secured mannequins
When employees neglect the safety of the customers and a slip and fall accident occurs, the store could face legal repercussions. If an accident happens without injury, it does not warrant a lawsuit. However, injuries after slipping and falling can range from mild to severe, especially for seniors.
Who Is Liable for a Slip and Fall Accident at Aeropostale in New York?
In New York, the statute of limitations on a slip and fall accident lawsuit is three years. That means that you have three years from the date of your accident to file a lawsuit against Aeropostale. As the plaintiff, you carry the burden of proving that the defendant is responsible for your accident and the subsequent injuries. To prove fault, one of the following must be true:
- The property owner or staff caused the dangerous condition intentionally and left it there, knowing that it was hazardous.
- The property owner or staff knew about the dangerous condition and did not remedy it.
- The property owner or staff must have known about the dangerous condition because any reasonable person would have known and remedied it.
The last is the most commonly used argument, but it is often difficult to prove. Ultimately, the court makes a discretionary judgment based on logic and common sense when deciding if the property owner or staff acted reasonably. They often consider the store safety check policy, among many other factors.
Challenges to Your Claim
In most slip and fall accident cases, the defendant will claim that you bear at least some fault for the accident and your injuries. Some typical arguments you may hear are:
- You entered an area of the store restricted to customers.
- You wore inappropriate footwear for the setting.
- You had every opportunity to avoid the dangerous condition.
- You were on your phone or doing something else that distracted you.
- There was a warning sign, but you ignored it.
More often than not, retail stores have security cameras that cover most or all of the store. It would help if you asked for a copy of that footage right away. It could assist in absolving you of any fault for the accident.
The Rule of Comparative Negligence
If you bear some responsibility for the accident, you may still receive some compensation. When both parties share fault, the rule of comparative negligence applies. Comparative negligence states that the percentage of fault belonging to you reflects the percentage deducted from the claim’s value. For example, if the jury awards you $60,000 and finds you 50% at fault for the accident, you only receive half of the award, which is $30,000.There are two types of comparative negligence:
- Modified comparative negligence states that you cannot receive compensation if your percent of fault exceeds 50%, meaning you are more responsible for the accident than the defendant.
- Pure comparative negligence states that you can receive compensation even if you are 99% responsible for the accident.
The state decides whether the pure or modified rule applies, and New York follows the pure comparative negligence rule.
What Are the Recoverable Damages in a Slip and Fall Case?
In a slip and fall accident case, there are two types of damages you may recover: compensatory and punitive. Punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant for egregious behavior, but these are almost never awarded in slip and fall cases.
An award of compensatory damages should make the injured person whole again by compensating for any financial losses associated with the accident. Compensatory damages are broken down into two categories:
- Economic, also known as specific, damages compensate for the quantifiable losses. These include the cost of medical treatment and future medical treatment, loss of income and future loss of income, costs of repair or replacement of damaged property, costs of any household changes or services needed to accommodate injury, and the loss of business opportunities or employment.
- Non-economic, also known as general, damages cover the losses without inherent monetary value. These include pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment in life, loss of companionship, mental anguish, disfigurement or disability, loss of consortium, and emotional distress.
The economic damages are easy to calculate using medical bills for treatments, pay stubs to show past and current wages, tax returns to predict future lost wages, and any respective receipts for property damage or household services. The non-economic damages are more difficult to quantify. A personal injury attorney will likely use precedented cases similar to yours or the help of experts, such as occupational therapists and psychologists.
What Are the Advantages of Hiring a Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer?
If you have not yet decided to hire a slip and fall accident lawyer, you should consider the following advantages:
- They file all the necessary paperwork for you.
- They often work on contingency, which means they only get paid when you get paid, because you do not need the added financial burden of legal representation.
- They understand how to accurately value your claim, especially the non-economic damages.
- They will fight for a fast and fair settlement so that you receive compensation quickly without going through the lengthy and costly process of the court system.
- They will investigate your accident, often with the help of other professionals, to search for more evidence that may add value to your claim.
- They offer a professional and objective point of view during a sometimes emotionally charged process.
- They understand the legal process and can advise you of your rights as they navigate you through it.
- They have experience with cases similar to yours and can sometimes provide support by introducing you to medical professionals who can help.
If you sustained an injury from a slip and fall accident at Aeropostale, you may benefit from hiring a personal injury attorney to handle the case for you. The experienced and knowledgeable lawyers at Hill & Moin will aggressively defend your rights to ensure that you get the compensation that you deserve. Contact us today for a free initial consultation and get started on your journey to physical and financial recovery.
If you sustained an injury from a slip and fall accident at any of the following commercial properties, our personal injury attorneys can help:
- Baskin Robbins
- Bath & Body Work
- Big Lots
- BJ’s Wholesale Club
- Burger King
- Burlington Coat Factory