Walmart Slip and Fall Settlements: How Much Can I Get?
Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran
Even in retail giants like Walmart, slips and falls can happen unexpectedly. If you suffer a slip and fall injury at a Michigan Walmart, you can seek compensation for your damages, including lost wages, medical expenses, and emotional distress.
Your Walmart slip and fall settlement amount is based on the severity of your injuries and the specifics of the incident. Our slip and fall accident attorneys can review your case, determine the amount of your damages, and help you negotiate a fair settlement from the mega-retailer.
How Common Are Walmart Slip and Fall Accidents?
As one of the world’s largest retail chains, Walmart welcomes approximately 240 million customers every day across its locations around the globe. With such a high volume of people visiting, it’s not uncommon for slip and fall incidents to occur within Walmart stores.
While specific figures on slip and fall incidents at Walmart are not publicly disclosed, these accidents typically occur due to reasons such as:
- High customer volume. Walmart experiences heavy foot traffic, leading to frequent spills, scattered debris, or other hazards. These hazards increase the likelihood of accidents for visitors.
- Varied floor surfaces. Walmart has several flooring surfaces that pose a slip or trip and fall risk. Tiles can become slippery when wet, carpets hide tripping hazards, and linoleum can be prone to uneven wear, all posing a danger to customers.
- Merchandise and display arrangement. Displays and shelving can intrude into walkways or be arranged in a manner that creates blind spots, making it easier for customers to trip or bump into items.
- Weather conditions. In Michigan, customers often track in snow and ice, leading to wet and slippery store entrances and aisles.
- Cleaning and maintenance. Hasty or incomplete cleaning processes that leave floors wet, soapy, or unevenly dried increase slip risks. Inadequate maintenance, like failing to repair or properly mark uneven flooring or torn carpeting, can also injure visitors.
- Parking lot and sidewalk conditions. In the outdoor areas of the store, factors like icy, uneven, or inadequately lit parking lots and sidewalks heighten the chances of slips and falls, especially during bad weather or in nighttime conditions.
Common Slip and Fall Injuries at Walmart
Slip and fall accidents can lead to various injuries, ranging from minor to severe and potentially life-changing. Typical injuries from such accidents include:
- Fractures and broken bones. A slip and fall can lead to fractures or breaks in the bones, such as the wrist, hip, or ankle.
- Head injuries. Head injuries, including concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), can occur if the victim strikes their head during the fall.
- Back and spinal cord injuries. Falling can put stress on the back and spine, potentially causing herniated discs, spinal cord injuries, or chronic pain.
- Sprains and strains. Ligaments and muscles can be strained or sprained during a fall, leading to pain, swelling, and limited mobility.
- Soft tissue injuries. These injuries can include bruises, cuts, and abrasions, which may seem minor but can still require medical attention.
- Emotional distress. Slip and fall accidents can lead to emotional trauma, including anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
- Hip fractures. Older adults are particularly susceptible to hip fractures, which can have serious implications for their mobility and quality of life.
Walmart’s Liability for Slip and Fall Accidents
When a slip and fall accident occurs on Walmart’s property, it brings up concerns regarding their liability. As a retail establishment, Walmart is responsible for keeping its environment reasonably safe for shoppers. This responsibility entails routine inspections and cleaning of their stores, prompt attention to potential hazards, and alerting customers to any risks.
Should the details of your incident indicate that the company failed to take these safety measures, resulting in your injury, you may have grounds to pursue a personal injury claim against them. To establish Walmart’s liability, you need to demonstrate the following key elements:
- Show Walmart’s duty of care. You need to prove that Walmart is obligated to maintain a safe environment for its customers. Our premises liability lawyers will establish the company’s duty for upkeep by examining maintenance records, reviewing safety policies, and collecting statements from witnesses.
- Prove breach of duty. You’ll need to show where Walmart fell short in fulfilling its responsibility. This can be done by sharing photos of the hazard when the accident occurred and providing incident reports that demonstrate the manager and staff did not adhere to the correct procedures.
- Link the breach to your accident. Our attorneys can assist in proving that Walmart’s negligence was the direct cause of your injury. We’ll do this by outlining the events that led to your fall and using expert testimony where needed.
- Document your damages. Our attorneys will help you gather and present all necessary evidence of your injuries and losses. This includes medical bills, documentation of lost wages, and personal accounts of pain and suffering, all of which illustrate the actual damages you’ve incurred from the incident, helping establish liability.
Determining the Value of a Walmart Slip and Fall Settlement
The settlement amount for your Walmart slip and fall case will depend on various aspects, such as the severity of your injuries and their lasting impact. When assessing the value of your potential compensation, we will take into account the following factors:
- Medical expenses. Your settlement will include the cost of medical treatment, such as hospital bills, doctor’s visits, medications, and rehabilitation. We’ll also consider any future expenses if your injuries necessitate ongoing care. Attorney Eileen Kroll, who is also a registered nurse, will leverage her medical expertise to thoroughly examine your medical records. She will accurately assess both your current and future medical costs to ensure a fair settlement.
- Lost wages. If your injuries have led to missed workdays, we’ll account for that, including any impact on your future earning potential. This covers scenarios where you’re unable to return to work or have to accept a lower-paying position. The calculated amount will reflect your salary and the extent of time missed.
- Pain and suffering. Non-economic damages address your physical pain, emotional distress, and how the injury affects your daily life. Although it’s hard to put a number on these experiences, settlements for pain and suffering typically use a per diem or multiplier method to determine the amount, which can boost your total settlement.
- Long-term effects. When dealing with permanent or long-term disabilities, your settlement will factor in future medical costs and the need for ongoing care. This consideration can raise the value of the settlement, particularly in cases of severe injuries.
- Comparative negligence. Under Michigan’s modified comparative negligence law, your settlement amount might be adjusted if you are deemed partly responsible for the incident. For instance, if you are found to be 20% at fault, your settlement may be reduced by that percentage. However, if it’s determined that you are more than 50% at fault, you will be ineligible to receive compensation.
- Insurance coverage. The extent of Walmart’s liability insurance coverage can impact the maximum amount you can receive in a payout. Being a large corporate entity, Walmart typically maintains high insurance limits to address damages that occur in its stores.
- Legal representation. The expertise and capability of your legal team play a crucial role in the outcome of your case. Skilled representation can be the deciding factor between a minimal settlement and a more substantial one that adequately meets all your needs. Our lawyers are well-equipped to represent you against a major corporation like Walmart, ensuring you receive a fair settlement, whether through negotiation or, if needed, in a court trial.
Case Examples of Slip and Fall Cases Against Walmart
In recent years, there have been several settlements from slip and fall cases involving Walmart. Below are some examples against Walmart, along with the jury-awarded compensation for the victims:
- Corley v. Wal-Mart Stores East, LP. A woman slipped and fell in a puddle of water while walking down the store aisle of a Walmart in Antioch, TN. The store had a video camera that captured footage of a store employee passing by and attempting to clean up the mess shortly before the plaintiff slipped and fell. At trial, the jury found in favor of the plaintiff, assigning 90% of fault to Walmart and awarding $525,000 in damages.
- Watts v. Wal-Mart Stores E., LP. Plaintiff Linda Watts suffered severe injuries from a slip and fall accident at a Walmart store in Woodstock, Georgia. Watts encountered a hazardous situation where she slid on a floor mat that was covering a puddle of liquid near a cash register, leading to a torn rotator cuff and dislocated shoulder. A federal jury in Atlanta heard the case and awarded Watts over $1.4 million in damages.
Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident at Walmart
If you’ve had a slip and fall accident at a Walmart in Michigan, there are important steps you should follow to safeguard your rights and strengthen your case. Here are the actions you should take if you experience a slip and fall either inside a Walmart store or in its parking lot:
- Seek immediate medical attention. Seek immediate medical attention for any injuries, even those that might appear minor at first. Keep a record of all medical treatments and expenses, as this documentation will assist your attorney in calculating your damages and establishing their connection to the fall.
- Report the accident. Report the incident to Walmart’s management or staff. Ensure that a store employee creates an incident report and provides accurate details of the accident. Get a copy for your records.
- Document the scene. If possible, take photographs or videos of the area where the accident occurred, including any hazards, spilled substances, or dangerous conditions. If you see a security camera, take a picture so your attorney can ask for footage from the store.
- Gather witness information. If there were witnesses to the accident, politely request their contact information in case your attorney needs to follow up with them. Their accounts could prove to be crucial for your case.
- Preserve evidence. Do not discard any clothing or footwear that may have been damaged during the fall. Place it inside a clear, sealed bag and give it to your attorney so they can use it for your claim.
- Consult an attorney. Contact a personal injury attorney experienced in slip and fall cases. They will assess the circumstances of your accident, help determine liability, and guide you through the legal process.
- Do not speak to Walmart’s insurers. Avoid discussing the incident with Walmart’s insurance representatives before speaking to your attorney. Your statements could potentially be used against you. Let us manage all interactions with the company’s representatives, ensuring your right to fair compensation is protected.
Why You Need an Attorney for Your Walmart Slip and Fall
Dealing with a slip and fall claim against a large company like Walmart can be complex, so it’s important to have the right legal support. Our team at Cochran, Kroll, & Associates, P.C. has the skills, experience, and resources to assist you, increasing your chances of a successful outcome for your case.
- Legal expertise. Our qualified personal injury lawyers have a strong track record of successful verdicts in slip and fall cases. We are committed to building a solid case for you and expertly guiding you through the legal process with confidence and skill.
- Thorough investigation. We conduct comprehensive investigations to gather crucial evidence, interview witnesses, and firmly establish liability. This might include obtaining surveillance footage, collecting incident reports, and consulting with experts.
- Negotiation skills. Our seasoned attorneys are highly skilled at negotiating with insurance companies. We will tirelessly advocate on your behalf to ensure you receive fair compensation that accurately represents the extent of your damages.
- Protection of rights. We are committed to protecting your rights every step of the way, offering guidance on best practices to avoid any accidental detriment to your case, such as posting updates on your social media accounts. Our team will take care of all interactions with insurance companies and opposing lawyers, ensuring your interests are always front and center.
- Trial experience. Should negotiations not result in a satisfactory settlement, our attorneys are ready and fully equipped to take your case to trial. With extensive experience in courtroom advocacy, we will vigorously represent your interests, showcasing our legal expertise.
- Knowledge of local laws. Our team is well-versed in Michigan’s unique legal environment, including recent updates to the state’s open and obvious doctrine. These changes carry important implications for slip and fall cases. Our team stays abreast of these developments, which helps us effectively counter any claims from Walmart about the hazard being evident, thereby strengthening your case.
- Maximizing compensation. Our primary goal is to maximize your compensation. This involves a comprehensive assessment of all damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering, to ensure you receive the financial compensation you deserve.
Contact Cochran, Kroll, & Associates, P.C. for Your Slip and Fall Case
Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. has an extensive background in defending the rights of those injured due to others’ negligence. If you’ve experienced a slip and fall injury at a Walmart in Michigan, we can provide the necessary guidance, support, and legal expertise.
Contact our experienced lawyers at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. today. We’ll listen to your claim and help you understand your potential award in a Walmart slip and fall settlement.
Our contingency fee basis means we only get paid if we win your case, so there is no financial risk to you to get started. Call our law firm today at 1-866-MICH-LAW and schedule your no-obligation, free case evaluation.
Disclaimer : The information provided is general and not for legal advice. The blogs are not intended to provide legal counsel and no attorney-client relationship is created nor intended.