West Palm Beach
*Note: The plaintiff and defendant’s names have been altered to protect their identities.
Maria (the plaintiff), a mother and grandmother, took her vehicle in to a nearby repair shop after hearing a strange noise that occurred while operating her vehicle. Upon arrival, Maria was asked by one of the repair shop’s employees to sit in the passenger’s seat while he took the vehicle for a drive to hear the noise first-hand. After driving it around and returning back to the shop, the employee asked Maria to go to his computer. When she exited the vehicle, she took a couple steps and slipped hard onto an oily, wet floor, causing her to lose her breath. An ambulance was called after several minutes of having difficulty breathing.
As a direct result of the accident, Maria suffered from the following injuries:
- A tear of the supraspinatous tendon at the articular surfaces of the left shoulder
- A left side herniation at C5-6 deforming the anterior left aspect of the thecal sac (reaching the left C6 nerve root)
- A C5-6 diskectomy decompression and fusion
- An oblique tear through the posterior horn of the medial meniscus of the left knee
- A surgical repair of the medial meniscal tear
- Weakness and numbness of the fourth and fifth finger
Liability rested with the defendant, and we believed the following duties were owed to Maria:
- To warn of the existence of an oily wet floor, of which they had or should have had greater knowledge than of Maria
- To protect Maria from foreseeable risks
- To use reasonable care in maintaining their premises
- To warn of a dangerous condition
Liability was clear because:
- The repair shop employees knew that patrons would be walking on the marble flooring in the area of the repair shop and still failed to clean up an oily, wet spill
- The repair shop’s employees and/or agents should have taken reasonable steps to alert its customers of the dangerous condition by using warning signs and/or cones
As a result of the incident, Maria’s medical bills totaled to nearly $95,000, not to mention the instances she had pay to hire help for activities she was no longer able to do herself after the accident.
After The Law Firm of Cohen & Cohen represented Maria’s case, we were able to resolve it for a total of $350,000.00.