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  1. #1
    nmcard is offline Junior Member
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    Slip and Fall at Walmart

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? NM

    I was at wal-mart with my family shopping (During this time WM was under a major remodel) . we were walking down main aisle when I slipped and fell on a slippery substance, when I got up my wrist hurt.. i immediately filed a claim with the manager on duty and went to the er.... I ended up having orthoscopic surgery on my wrist....after about three months i was still having the same pain..i ended up going back to the surgeon having another mri which indicated more damage in my wrist...ended up having a more intensive surgery where I had to be in a cast for 6 weeks. I was released finally a year and four months after the initial injury. The claim adjustor from Wal mart offered to pay a total lein amount of 20,000 and 15,000 for pain, suffering, time lost from work and any expenses I have occured. I dont believe this is a fair amount. What should be my next step?
  2. #2
    ecmst12 is online now Senior Member
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    What you should have done a long time ago, hire a lawyer. Fortunately the SOL in your state is 3 years not 2 so you still have time.
  3. #3
    nmcard is offline Junior Member
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    I have talked to 2 different lawyers and they pretty much say walmart is very hard to deal with and that sounds like a good amount.
  4. #4
    nmcard is offline Junior Member
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    im debating on giving a counter offer, but not sure if that would be good or not. Im also not sure what a fair amount would be.
  5. #5
    ecmst12 is online now Senior Member
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    I would say talk to a few more lawyers - ones with more guts.
  6. #6
    Willlyjo Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by nmcard View Post
    im debating on giving a counter offer, but not sure if that would be good or not. Im also not sure what a fair amount would be.
    You are probably not going to get anywhere with a counter offer. However, why hasn't a lawyer taken your case? Are you looking for one to take your case?

    You can research slip and fall injuries online as well as "pain and suffering". You will find that the pain and suffering part of a settlement alone is 2--5 times the doctor bills. It is very reasonable to place a figure at twice the amount of doctors bills, since you have had extensive sugery on your wrist.

    If you don't want to settle for what Walmart has offered, you should get a lawyer. Any lawyer with expertise in Slip and Fall injuries should be capable of getting you more if you want to wait for it. Of course successfully retaining a lawyer on a contingency basis depends on proven liability on Walmart's part.
  7. #7
    nmcard is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Willlyjo View Post
    You are probably not going to get anywhere with a counter offer. However, why hasn't a lawyer taken your case? Are you looking for one to take your case?.
    I have talked to 2 different local lawyers that dont want to deal with walmart. Waiting on call backs from other lawyers.

    You can research slip and fall injuries online as well as "pain and suffering". You will find that the pain and suffering part of a settlement alone is 2--5 times the doctor bills. It is very reasonable to place a figure at twice the amount of doctors bills, since you have had extensive sugery on your wrist.

    If you don't want to settle for what Walmart has offered, you should get a lawyer. Any lawyer with expertise in Slip and Fall injuries should be capable of getting you more if you want to wait for it. Of course successfully retaining a lawyer on a contingency basis depends on proven liability on Walmart's part.[/QUOTE]

    Hopefully I will find someone to take this case.
  8. #8
    latigo is offline Senior Member
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    Don’t assume that just because Walmart has tendered an offer of settlement that they are admitting responsibility or that they are liable as a matter of law because they are not.

    Although Walmart like any other retail store owes a high degree of due care to its business customers it is not an insurer and cannot be held liable unless there is proof of fault.

    So, if push comes to shove and you file a tort action, before the issue of damages can be submitted to a jury it will be your burden to prove that the store was negligent in not attending to the spillage and that its negligence was the proximate cause of your fall.

    And just because the spillage was present and caused the fall is not proof of the store’s negligence. You will have to prove that the spillage not only created a hazardous condition, but that the condition had existed for such a length of time that in the exercise of due cares on the part of the store’s employees it could have been removed.

    So let me ask you this. Do you have any inkling as to how long whatever the substance was had been on the floor before your fall? Or how it came to be on the floor? Were any photographs taken that would indicate that it had begun to coagulate or evaporate, fresh, old, etc. Because these are issues you will need to be on top of to have any chance in court.

    _________________

    And speaking of chances, slip and fall cases are at best 50/50. And even if you come out on top on the issue of liability, there is no guarantee that the jury will award you more than is presently offered.

    Rest assured that there will be some folks on the jury that will see $15K as a small fortune.

    There is a proven adage in this business that a poor settlement is often better than a good lawsuit. So my advice is to as Woody Allen, “Take the money and run”!
  9. #9
    applecruncher is offline Senior Member
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    nmcard -
    Walmart is not invincible. Don’t be intimidated.
    A relative successfully sued them for a similar case. (They settled about a year after the incident, before it went to trial.)
    She was initially asked if she knew how long the glass jar of whatever had been on the floor, and she said ‘no’. This is such a ridiculous question; how is a customer supposed to know this? Yes, photographs were taken – by Walmart and also by another customer who saw the accident happen. I don’t know if there was any coagulation or not; that’s really reaching.
    Good luck.
    Rest assured that there will be some folks on the jury that will see $15K as a small fortune.
    Some would see $2,000 as a small fortune, and some would see $15,000 as peanuts. Some will see Walmart as a retail monster that needs to take responsibility.
    Last edited by applecruncher; 11-11-2010 at 07:49 AM.
  10. #10
    cyjeff is offline Senior Member
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    You should also realize that Wal-Mart is sued so often for slip and fall incidents that they actually have a "cattle call" approach to the process.

    Your attorney would go to Bentonville and be ushered into a room with the rest of the attorneys suing... Walmart will then provide a packet of "need to know" information and appointments will be scheduled to get your attorney in front of one of the members of the very large Walmart Legal Department.

    In other words... this isn't their first rodeo.... and you need to review what you really think you are going to get out of this.

    It isn't like Walmart doesn't have enough experience to know what a fair amount is and what will and will not stand up in court.
  11. #11
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by applecruncher View Post
    A relative successfully sued them for a similar case. (They settled about a year after the incident, before it went to trial.)
    .
    that is not successfully suing them. That is a negotiated resolution which is exactly where the OP is right now. A successful suit is one that goes to court and a judgment is entered in your favor.
  12. #12
    applecruncher is offline Senior Member
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    No, that is not “exactly where OP is right now”.
    OP is in discussion with Walmart claims adjuster. OP did not hire an attorney yet, no lawsuit has been filed.
    In the case I referred to, an attorney filed suit against Walmart, they made an acceptable offer just prior to trial. Yes, it was resolved. Granted, there was no mesmerized jury, surprise witness, or one-armed man. Yes, there was a resolution.

    All that aside, the point is that people do file lawsuits against Walmart and sometimes they (Walmart) back down.
  13. #13
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    the point is; they did not successfully sue walmart as you claimed they did.
  14. #14
    applecruncher is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by justalayman View Post
    the point is; they did not successfully sue walmart as you claimed they did.
    Actually, "they" as you say, did.
    And, the OP in this thread is not exactly at the stage of a lawsuit, as was your claim.
    Furthermore, what you asserted vs. what actually happened has nothing to do with the issue.

    I'll let you have the last word. Enjoy!
  15. #15
    cyjeff is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by applecruncher View Post
    Actually, "they" as you say, did.
    no, THEY successfully came to a settlement WITHOUT suing.

    And, the OP in this thread is not exactly at the stage of a lawsuit, as was your claim.
    Just as in your unrelated case, the next step after rejecting the settlement would be to move on to court... the suing process.

    Furthermore, what you asserted vs. what actually happened has nothing to do with the issue.
    The same could be said about your relative's unrelated case that you heard about second hand.

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