Tampa Hardware & Home Improvement Store Premises Liability Lawyer
Weekends often mean a trip to Home Depot, Lowe’s, or simply the neighborhood hardware store to pick up a few supplies for a DIY project. Hardware and home improvement stores offer a dizzying array of merchandise for people of all skill levels. Yet they also contain a number of potential safety risks that can lead to serious injuries.
If you have been injured in an accident while shopping at one of these stores, the company may be responsible for your medical bills, lost income, and other out-of-pocket expenses and damages. A qualified Tampa hardware & home improvement store premises liability lawyer can review your accident and advise you of your legal options. At Florin Gray, we provide hands-on personal representation to personal injury victims and their families. We know how to deal with the big home improvement chains–and their insurance companies–and we will make every effort to obtain a just and fair financial outcome for you and your family.
Common Hazards You May Face at the Home Improvement Store
A hardware or home improvement store may not be as inherently dangerous as, say, an active construction site. But there are still a number of potential hazards that can hurt an unsuspecting customer. Some of the more common scenarios we see in our practice include:
- slip and fall accidents caused slippery floors or sawdust;
- slip and fall accidents at store entrances that have not been properly maintained;
- trip and fall accidents due to defective or missing floor mats;
- trip and fall accidents on debris left in aisles;
- trip and fall accidents on unsecured pallets of merchandise;
- unsecured merchandise falling and injuring a customer; and
- forklift accidents in the store’s warehouse area.
Under Florida premises liability law, a hardware or home improvement store owner has a duty to keep their property in reasonably safe condition to protect invited members of the public–i.e., customers–from potential harm. While this does not automatically make home improvement stores responsible for every injury that may occur, it does put them on notice that they need to be proactive in ensuring that areas of the store open to the public must be regularly inspected for problems.
Injured at Lowe’s or Home Depot Today? Contact Florin Gray
Florida recently made significant changes to the laws governing personal injury claims, including those based on premises liability. Two of the key changes were to the statute of limitations and the standard governing comparative fault.
The Florida legislature cut the statute of limitations from four to two years. This means that if you have a potential personal injury claim against a home improvement or hardware store or home improvement center, you do not have much time to investigate the circumstances surrounding your accident and file a lawsuit.
As for the changes to comparative fault, an accident victim can now be barred from collecting any compensation if the defendant can prove the victim was more than 50 percent at-fault for an accident. Retailers will often try to use comparative fault to shift blame to an accident victim, and these recent changes will only further encourage this defense.
So if you have sustained serious injuries while shopping and need to speak with a skilled Tampa hardware and home improvement store premises liability lawyer, contact Florin Gray today to schedule a free consultation.