The Glassman Law Firm, P.C.

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The Glassman Law Firm, P.C.

225 S. Meramec Avenue
Suite 320-T
Clayton, Missouri 63105

Phone: 314.446.6000
Fax: 314.446.6005

Frequently Asked Questions

Dangerous Premises FAQS

> I went to a party at a neighbor’s home and fell down the basement steps. Is the neighbor responsible because I fell at his house?
> Last winter I went shopping at a neighborhood department store. As I was entering the store, I slipped on some ice and broke my wrist. I was hospitalized and required surgery. Now I have permanent restrictions in the use of my hand. Can I sue the store?
> I fell inside a store and broke my ankle while looking at a merchandise display. I slipped on a hanger that I didn’t see because I was not watching the floor. The insurance company for the store says that I can’t recover because the injury was my fault. Do I have a claim?
> I suffered a serious head injury in a motor vehicle accident. The traffic signal that governed my lane of travel had been turned from its normal position, and I couldn’t see that I had a red light. I proceeded through the intersection and collided with a truck. Is the city responsible for the condition of its traffic signal?

I went to a party at a neighbor’s home and fell down the basement steps. Is the neighbor responsible because I fell at his house?

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No. Before a recovery for negligent maintenance or repair of premises can be achieved, the law requires proof that the property owner knew or could have known of a hazardous condition which, if remedied or warned of, would have prevented the injury. A failure to use reasonable care to inspect, maintain or repair defective premises is required to win your case. Just because you were injured on someone’s property does not mean you have a claim against him.

Last winter I went shopping at a neighborhood department store. As I was entering the store, I slipped on some ice and broke my wrist. I was hospitalized and required surgery. Now I have permanent restrictions in the use of my hand. Can I sue the store?

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It depends. Retail stores are responsible for the prevention of injuries occurring inside and outside their premises which can be avoided by proper inspection, maintenance, repair or warnings. If a dangerous condition, such as an ice buildup occurs simply due to weather (a natural accumulation), customers should be on notice of hazardous conditions and exercise care for their own safety. The store is not liable merely because of snow or ice falling.

On the other hand, if a dangerous condition results from an unnatural or artificial accumulation of ice, the retail store could be held liable. For example, if an awning or gutter has a defect or crack which causes a run-off onto the sidewalk below, and this results in an artificial accumulation of ice, this would not be a condition caused by natural weather. In such a case, the retail merchant is responsible for correcting this hazardous condition. If the evidence shows that the merchant knew or should have known of this condition, but failed to take reasonable steps to remedy it, you have a right to recover damages for your injuries.

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I fell inside a store and broke my ankle while looking at a merchandise display. I slipped on a hanger that I didn’t see because I was not watching the floor. The insurance company for the store says that I can’t recover because the injury was my fault. Do I have a claim?

Probably. Most states have laws and statutes which apply the principle of comparative fault. This means just what it says. Your fault in failing to keep a careful lookout is weighed against the store’s fault for failure to maintain its floors in a safe and clean condition. A jury will decide the percentage of fault that each party contributed to cause the fall. Although you are allowed to recover damages for your medical expenses, loss of income and any permanent or residual condition, your recovery will be reduced by the percentage of fault that is attributed to you. If you or a family member has been told that he or she is not entitled to recover because the injury was caused by the victim’s own fault, consult with an attorney at The Glassman Law Firm, P.C. who is knowledgeable and experienced in handling dangerous premises cases involving comparative fault issues.

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I suffered a serious head injury in a motor vehicle accident. The traffic signal that governed my lane of travel had been turned from its normal position, and I couldn’t see that I had a red light. I proceeded through the intersection and collided with a truck. Is the city responsible for the condition of its traffic signal?

This claim depends upon the results of a careful investigation of city and state records of the intersection and its signals. If not properly maintained and repaired, a city can be responsible for an injury caused by the failure to timely inspect and/or repair a worn or defective electric traffic signal standard that results in an accident. In most states, cities are liable for the defective conditions of their property and the operation of its motor vehicles. An experienced premises liability attorney at The Glassman Law Firm, P.C. will provide you with a free consultation and evaluate both the city’s responsibility and your neurological injury.

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Please see our page on Dangerous Premises for more information.

Please see our Dangerous Premises Resources / Links.

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Serving Missouri, St. Louis, Jefferson County, St. Charles County, St. Louis County, Franklin County, Cape Girardeau County, Butler County, St. Francois County, Warren County, Lincoln County - Madison County, Illinois, St. Clair County, IL

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