Shoppers enjoy browsing their favorite clothing store, selecting the perfect product at a grocery store, and picking up supplies at the local hardware store, often on a weekly or monthly basis. These errands can be completed safely thanks to retail workers ensuring the stores are clean, tidy, and well-maintained.
Retail stores are generally considered safe places for both customers and employees. It might come as a surprise to learn that retail workers could face a variety of hazards that can lead to injuries as they go about their daily duties such as stocking shelves, moving boxes in a stockroom or warehouse, climbing ladders, and more.
Accidents and Common Injuries in Retail Stores
Retail stores offer various services and amenities based on price, geographic location, and function. The injuries suffered in retail stores vary depending on the establishment. Some retail stores offer big discounts to their customers by cutting maintenance costs, and therefore, slips and accidental falls can occur frequently in these places. Below is a list of some of the common accidents and injuries that occur because of retail store accidents:
-Muscle strains and sprains
-Cuts, punctures, and scrapes
-Slips and falls due to poor lighting, improperly maintained stairs or broken furniture
-Struck by objects
-Injuries due to poorly maintained elevators and escalators
-Head and neck wounds
-Spinal cord injuries
The Retail Industry Standard of Care
When people decide to shop in a retail store, they not only trust their belongings to the establishment but also trust that they will be safe. Texas law defines retail stores as “public establishments” that have a special duty to protect their customers. Retail store owners must keep their facilities in reasonably safe conditions and correct and/or repair any known dangerous conditions. The owners or managers also must inspect hidden defects in the property and if these defects are found, they must repair them or make users aware of the potential danger.
Retail Store Responsibility for Accidents and Injuries
When retail stores don’t follow the standard of care, by action or omission, they could be held liable for negligence. There are three essential elements that a plaintiff must prove to succeed in a negligence claim. These elements are:
-The retail establishment had a legal duty toward its patrons
-The retail establishment breached its legal duty of care
-As a result of the breach, the patron suffered injuries
If a court finds that the retail establishment was negligent, the plaintiff may be entitled to two types of damages: compensatory and punitive. Compensatory damages are divided into two subcategories: monetary and non-monetary. Monetary damages include benefits such as:
-Present and future medical expenses
-Loss of present and future income
-Compensation due to wrongful death
Non-monetary damages are more difficult to calculate but are still recoverable. Non-monetary damages include:
-Pain and suffering
-Loss of enjoyment
The courts will grant punitive damages when they find that the defendant’s conduct was particularly offensive. Punitive damages are granted to make an example of the defendant to prevent other people from incurring the same acts in the future. Texas imposes a limit on the number of punitive damages awarded in a cause of action for personal injury. Punitive damages in Texas are capped at the greater of $200,000 or two times the number of economic damages PLUS the amount equal to non-economic damages, up to a total of $750,000.
The statute of limitations for personal injury in Texas is two years from the date the cause of action accrues. This means that you must file your personal injury lawsuit in a court of law no later than two years after the event that caused your personal injury. Texas also has the same statute of limitations in cases of wrongful death lawsuits. Therefore, a victim’s family has two years from the date of death of the victim to file a claim.
Contact PMR Law Today
At PMR Law, our attorneys have experience handling cases involving personal injuries caused by negligence in Houston and the surrounding region. We can help you regardless of the type or severity of the injury. Reach out online or by phone to speak with a Houston injury attorney.
Contact our personal injury lawyers at 832-844-6428 Get in touch with us immediately so we can evaluate your case for free. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can also fill out a form by clicking here.
PMR Law is considered one of the Best Law Firms of America, by Rue Ratings. Several of our attorneys have been given the honor of being named Super Lawyers by Thomson Reuters. The American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys has named our attorneys 10 Best in Client Satisfaction. Speaking of personal injury, Attorney and Practice Magazine awarded our attorneys with Top 10 Personal Injury Attorney distinctions. The National Trial Lawyers have named three of our attorneys as Top 100 attorneys. The Academy of Attorneys has named two of our attorneys as Top 40 Under 40. Our attorneys have been recognized as Best Attorneys of America, by Rue Ratings. PMR Law is a proud member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocate Forum. Texas Lawyer magazine has named PMR Law as the #1 Personal Injury Law Firm in Houston.