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When is a store owner liable for a slip and fall injury?

People go onto other people's property in Tennessee every day. Sometimes the person is explicitly invited onto the property, such as a friend or family member's home, sometimes they enter onto property without permission and other times there is an implicit invitation onto the property.

The main places that the people have implicit invitations to enter are stores and other businesses which sell goods or services. The store owners do not extend a personal invitation to every customer, but instead they have a general invite to any customer.

When people enter into these stores, they usually want to simply go in and buy whatever item they went in to get. However, sometimes they leave with more than just these items. Sometimes they also leave with a catastrophic injury. Occasionally there are dangerous conditions on the property which cause injuries to the customers.

If this occurs, the store owner may be liable to compensate the victim for the injuries. However, the victim must prove certain elements were present. Since the customers have implicit invitations to be in the store, the victim must prove that the shop owner or his or her workers actually knew that a danger existed, caused the danger, or should have had knowledge of the danger through reasonable care. If the victim proves that, then they must also prove that the dangerous property condition was the cause of the accident and that the store owner did not adequately protect the victim from it.

Unfortunately there are many people in Tennessee hurt in slip and fall type accidents. These injuries can be very devastating and costly for the victim. However, the store owner is not automatically responsible for every injury incurred on their property. In order for the store owner to be liable the victim must prove that the store owner knew about the dangerous condition and did not protect the victim from it. These can be very fact specific cases due to this requirement and experienced attorneys may be a useful resource.

Source: FindLaw, "Proving Fault in Slip and Fall Accidents" Oct. 16, 2017

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