If you suffered an injury in a slip and fall on a wet floor when a warning sign was posted, it could be more difficult — though not impossible — to sue for compensation. The property owner or manager has specific responsibilities, and a wet floor sign may fulfill them. This could provide a defense to your claim. However, every situation is unique, so discuss your case with a slip and fall attorney to determine whether you still have grounds to file a lawsuit.
What Goes into a Slip and Fall Claim in California?
A successful slip and fall claim in California has four key elements. Knowing these elements can help you understand how the presence of a wet floor sign might affect your claim.
1. Duty of Care
In California, property owners and managers have a legal “duty of care” to ensure the premises are safe for visitors. This includes promptly addressing potential hazards and providing adequate warning if the danger cannot be immediately rectified. If the owner put out a wet floor sign, they could argue that they fulfilled their duty of care by alerting visitors to the potential hazard.
2. Breach of Duty
A “breach of duty” occurs when property owners fail to uphold their responsibility to maintain a safe environment. Despite a wet floor sign, it could constitute a breach if the owner did not take reasonable steps to rectify the situation in a timely manner or if the sign was not visible. A competent slip and fall accident attorney can help determine whether a breach occurred in your case.
“Causation” links the breach of duty and your injury. Even with a wet floor sign present, if you can prove that the owner’s negligence directly led to your accident, you may still have a valid claim.
“Damages” refer to the physical, emotional, or financial losses you suffered from the accident. In a successful slip and fall lawsuit, you may be able to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Consult with a slip and fall lawyer to understand what damages you may be entitled to.
When Does a Property Owner Have to Put Out a Wet Floor Sign?
In California, a property owner must put out a wet floor sign when they know of a liquid spill or other slippery condition they cannot immediately rectify. If they fail to do so or the sign doesn’t provide sufficient warning in a visible location, they could be held liable for slip and fall accidents that occur as a result.
A wet floor sign can significantly impact a slip and fall accident liability. A clearly visible and appropriately placed wet floor sign can absolve a property owner from some — if not all — liability. This is because the sign serves as a notice to visitors, warning them about the potential hazard so that they can avoid it.
However, this does not automatically exempt the owner from all responsibility. The sign must be reasonably visible and positioned effectively to alert all visitors of the hazard ahead.
If the sign was poorly placed, inadequate in its warning, or the owner failed to address the problem within a reasonable time, they may still be held accountable. In these scenarios, the property owner could be found negligent and thus liable for a visitor’s injuries from a slip and fall accident.
What to Do After a Wet Floor Sign Slip and Fall Accident
As with all accidents and injuries, your priority should always be your safety and health. Once you have checked for injuries and seen a doctor, you should consider contacting a slip and fall lawyer about your legal rights. You need an experienced attorney to review your case and determine whether you have strong enough evidence to proceed.
Contact Salamati Law for a Free Slip and Fall Case Review
Discuss your case with a slip and fall lawyer in Los Angeles at Salamati Law to find out whether you have the basis for filing a lawsuit. Our team will ask for details about what happened and request as much evidence as you have and can find to support your case. If we believe you have a claim, we will work quickly to gather more evidence and build your case. Contact us now to get started on your journey toward winning the compensation you deserve.