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Young man obtains $150,000 in compensation after slip and fall on banana in supermarket

Case Overview
  • In January 2017, our client attended his local supermarket and suffered a slip and fall injury when he stepped on a piece of banana on the floor.
  • Our team collected medical and liability evidence through subpoenas and experts liability reports.
  • We were able to achieve a settlement of $150,000 for our client without the need of going through with a full court hearing.

In January 2017, our client attended his local supermarket and suffered a slip and fall injury when he stepped on a piece of banana on the floor within close proximity to the fresh food and fresh meat areas.

The Plaintiff contacted Gerard Malouf and Partners in May 2017 to enquire about making a claim for compensation for public liability. We immediately got to work in collating our client’s medical records and liability documents.

Prior to the incident, our client was a young man who was working as a chef. Our client was no longer able to pursue this field of employment and instead began working in an office-based environment due to his injuries.

Pauline Yacoub
Our Approach

As a result of the incident, we had our client assessed by an orthopaedic surgeon, psychiatrist, and occupational therapist. Our client was diagnosed as suffering from a musculoligamentous strain and contusion of the cervical spine. The Plaintiff was also diagnosed as suffering from an Adjustment Disorder with Depressed Mood.

Proceedings in the District Court were commenced against the Sydney Supermarket on the basis that they failed to have in place a proper system of inspection and cleaning and failed to warn our client of the substance on the floor.

Our team issued subpoenas on the Defendant, and it was revealed that the Defendant did not conduct regular and routine cleaning of the floor area, nor did they provide slip-resistant flooring or water-absorbent mats. 

In addition, our team obtained an expert liability report from a safety management and building specialist, who provided the opinion that the Defendant failed to conduct a risk assessment of the area and eliminate or control the highly potential hazard of a contaminate being split on the floor.

Prior to the incident, our client was a young man who was working as a chef. Our client was no longer able to pursue this field of employment and instead began working in an office-based environment due to his injuries. 

All medical and liability evidence was collated and served on the Defendant and an informal settlement conference was conducted. During negotiations our public liability lawyers were able to achieve a settlement of $150,000 for our client without the need of going through with a full-court hearing.

The Result

During negotiations we were able to achieve a settlement of $150,000 for our client without the need of going through with a full-court hearing

Pauline Yacoub Lawyer

Pauline Yacoub

Solicitor
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy. – Proverbs 31:8,9.
Frequently Asked Questions

More Information

Public liability refers to the responsibilities owners or occupants of a public space have to protect anyone who enters. If the owners or occupants fall short of these responsibilities, resulting in an injury, a case for compensation can be made.

Some of the most common incidents covered by public liability law include:

  • The food or drink from a restaurant makes you sick: The most common example of this type of public liability is food poisoning, however improperly disclosed allergens could also lead to litigation.
  • A slip and fall accident caused by negligence: Slip and fall incidents are especially common in busy public places such as playgrounds, schools, shopping centres, common walkways in buildings and outdoor event venues. They can result from negligent behaviour if poorly lit, uneven, unmarked or slippery surfaces are involved, amongst other reasons.
  • Injury caused by poor workmanship: If a product used by a space fails mechanically and causes an injury, a public liability claim can often be made. Examples include exploding gas bottles, poorly constructed furnishings and inadequate building structures. These cases may also be eligible for product liability litigation, if you decide to pursue both the property owner and the product manufacturer.
  • An attack by an animal while in a space: If the owners or occupants of a space fail to keep an animal, whether domestic or wild, contained as a result of negligence, you may have a potential case.

 

The compensation amount in a supermarket accident case can vary depending on the severity and impact of an injury. If an injury requires extensive medical care, limits your ability to work or severely impacts your quality of life you can expect a relatively large sum.

In general, in a public liability case you can claim damages for:

  • Immediate medical costs
  • Long-term medical costs
  • Non-economic loss
  • Economic loss

 

Following an initial meeting, the first task will be to establish the general facts of the case. This will include your medical diagnosis, which will need to be confirmed and documented by a doctor; and proof that the person or company at fault owed you a duty of care, which will need to be demonstrated. Together, this will show that your injury occurred when they breached that duty of care.

From there a further investigation will proceed—contacting and interviewing witnesses, speaking with expert consultants, and more—all in order to bolster the strength of your case even further. Only once this process is complete, and your claim can be demonstrated and proven in full, will the process move on to the next step.
 

Public liability claims enable you to recoup the financial and emotional costs of suffering an injury due to someone else’s negligence. Defendants regularly offer monetary settlements to claimants, particularly if they acknowledge liability and believe they would lose in court.

But should you accept the settlement or proceed to the later stages of litigation instead, where a judge will have the final decision? Every case is different, but here are some of the factors you may wish to consider before making your choice:

  1. The size of the settlement
  2. The strength of your case
  3. Your patience levels
  4. Your lawyer’s advice

 

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Gerard Malouf & Partners
 — Personal Injury Compensation Lawyers

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