Slip and fall in shopping centre on slip resistant paint can still attract compensation for injuries

PUBLISHED 23 Feb 2015

Ms SW was the secretary for a multimillion dollar family business. In November 2012, when attending a shopping centre, she slipped and fell at a very small step when returning to her car, which caused her a serious fracture to her right shoulder.

On the day of the accident she was wearing new leather sole designer shoes in which the middle part consisted of a hard smooth surface. Her right foot was in mid step. This caused two hard surfaces to come together resulting in Ms SW from falling.

There were residual yellow paint marks on her shoes which were initially thought to be wet paint. However, through closer examination the paint merely amounted to paint transfer.

Although SW was not doing anything out of the ordinary that caused her to slip and fall, the paint would have met Australian standards as non-slip as she slipped on non-slip paint.

Ms SW did not suffer any economic loss owing to her position in her company. Further, she did not require significant domestic assistance and care and her medical and treatment expenses were largely assisted by her private insurance company.

Nevertheless, SW sustained a significant injury to her right shoulder which prevented her from some activities of daily lifting and also resulted in the restriction of movement and pain and suffering.

The matter proceeded with refusals of accepting liability from both the owner and operator of the premises. It was not until the matter had been listed for hearing that reasonable offers were made to resolve the claim.

The solicitors of Gerard Malouf & Partners were able to paint a circumstance where a person who was not doing anything out of the ordinary other than walking would suffer from serious injury, and the ramifications that it would have to other shopping centres that the Defendants owned and operated.

As a result of GMP’s commitment to Ms SW, a slip & fall compensation result amounting to $70,000 was achieved.

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