Walmart Shopper Awarded $7.5 Million in Slip & Fall Premises Liability Lawsuit

photo_1595_20060522-200x300An Alabama jury recently awarded $7.5 million to an Army veteran after breaking his hip at a Walmart store. The incident took place in 2015 when the retired sergeant was shopping in an Alabama Walmart and his foot got stuck in the side of a wooden pallet under a watermelon display. This led him to fall and shatter his hip, an injury that permanently changed his life, according to his injury attorney. His lawyer filed a premises liability lawsuit arguing that Walmart neglected to keep its premises reasonably safe thereby resulting in his client’s life-altering injuries. Walmart was sued for negligence and wantonness and lost but said it plans to appeal the $7.5 million decision. At Tapalian Law, our Providence personal injury law firm has helped clients seek compensation for accidents and injuries they have incurred on another person’s, or businesses’, property.

What is Premises Liability?

Legally speaking, premises liability holds property owners and residents liable for accidents and injuries that occur on their property. This could be a homeowner’s or business owner’s property. When someone comes onto your property, they have a “reasonable expectation” of not getting injured. Just as drivers are required to operate their motor vehicle with a “duty of care” to avoid injuring others in a car accident, many states including Rhode Island require property owners to exercise “reasonable care” in maintaining their property for those who may come upon the property such as an invited guest or delivery person. At a business such as a restaurant, owners expect patrons on their property to conduct business and therefore need to keep the property in proper, safe, working condition. If an owner breaches this duty of care, they may be held liable for the injuries that occurred on their property, such as a slip and fall, that took place due to the owner’s failure to fix a dangerous condition on the property that they knew about, or should have known about. The slip and fall attorney’s at Tapalian Law have helped clients who have been hurt in a premises liability accident in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

Examples of Premises Liability

Slip and falls are the most frequently reported type of Rhode Island premises liability lawsuits. Young children and the elderly are more vulnerable to incurring serious injuries in slip and fall accidents. However, premises liability also encompasses other types of personal injury, including, but not limited to cases involving:

  • Slip & falls (wet floors, unsecured rugs)
  • Snow & ice (failure to clear snow or ice from walkways)
  • Swimming pools (failure to have proper fencing and locks)
  • Defective condition of property
  • Poorly maintained property (broken steps)
  • Elevators & escalators
  • Inadequate security or lighting

Proving Fault in a Slip and Fall Lawsuit

Rhode Island property owners owe everyone who legally comes upon their property a duty of care, with the exception of trespassers.  If a person has been injured on another’s property due to the owner breaching their duty of care, it is up to the plaintiff to prove that the defendant breached this duty of care as a property owner. Comparative negligence also factors into Rhode Island personal injury accidents and partial fault may be awarded to both parties, based on a percentage of fault determined.

How Can Attorney David Tapalian Help You with Your Premises Liability Case?

If you, or a loved, one has been hurt in a slip and fall accident or injured due to dangerous conditions on someone else’s property, you should speak with an experienced Providence premises liability lawyer to discuss the details of your injuries. Tapalian Law has assisted numerous clients in the Rhode Island and Massachusetts area who have suffered from slip and fall, trip and fall, and other types of premises liability injuries due to a property owner’s failure to maintain the property. We will take the time to assess your case at no charge and advise you as to whether or not we feel you have a valid injury lawsuit against the property owner. Our personal injury law firm works on a contingency basis and we only get paid if you win your case. Don’t hesitate to contact us today for a free evaluation of your premises liability personal injury case to ensure your rights are protected. Contact slip and fall Attorney David Tapalian at


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