Chick-fil-A is a very popular fast-food restaurant chain with locations all over the United States. The rapid pace that defines the fast-food industry lends itself to busy employees who may neglect cleaning and safety standards during rush hours. Dangerous conditions may cause accidents, such as slips, trips, and falls. If you suffered an injury in a slip and fall accident at Chick-fil-A, you could possibly recover some of the losses you suffered.
Possible Safety Hazards at a Chick-fil-A Restaurant
Restaurants of any kind are susceptible to slip and fall safety hazards because of the high probability of spills, but there are many things that may cause a person to slip and fall in a Chick-fil-A:
- Drink spills on the floor of the dining area or around the soda machine
- Mopped floors with no proper warning signage
- Leaks from equipment or the roof left untreated
- Wet entrances caused by water tracked in from outside
- Broken floor tiles
- Worn or torn rugs
- Broken toilet or sink in the bathroom
- Loose cords or clutter in areas where customers and employees walk
- Broken lights in areas where it is difficult to see
Chick-fil-A franchise property owners are responsible for the safety of guests on the entire property, including outside in the parking lot and the surrounding walkways.
Connecticut typically receives a high amount of snowfall and ice during the colder months. If a property owner fails to clear the parking lot in a reasonable amount of time, he or she is potentially liable for any injuries caused by falls. The question of liability is more complex for stores located in malls, airports, colleges, and other facilities.
Among the most at-risk demographics are the elderly and small children. Seniors are the most at risk for severe injuries. Some of the most common injuries suffered are:
- Broken bones, usually in the hips, wrists, and ankles
- Tears in the tendons, ligaments, or rotator cuff
- Concussions or traumatic head injuries
- Contusions or bruises
- Muscles strains and sprains
The severity of injuries varies, and it is important to remember that not all injuries from slip and fall accidents at Chick-fil-A are the result of the staff’s negligence. To receive compensation for your injuries, the property owner or staff must be liable.
4 Elements of a Slip and Fall Accident Case in Connecticut
The burden of proving liability in any personal injury case falls on you, the plaintiff. There are four key legal elements that come into play in a slip and fall accident lawsuit, and most of them revolve around liability.
- Duty of care: The rule of premises liability applies to slip and fall cases. This means that the property owner owes you a duty of care and must maintain the safety conditions of the property for all customers and guests. You must prove that the property owner failed to maintain a safe environment and that it led to your accident.
- Reasonability: The most common way that plaintiffs prove the liability of property owners is by proving that any reasonable person would have known about the dangerous condition that caused the accident and fixed it. You may define the term “reasonable” in this case by evaluating the company’s safety maintenance efforts, such as safety checklists with mandated completion during every shift.
- Constructive notice: Under Connecticut law, the property owner must have had notice of the dangerous condition and failed to remedy it in a reasonable amount of time. You should prove that he or she actually knew about the condition that caused your accident.
- Damages: To receive compensation for damages, there must be actual damages, and you must prove them with real evidence. You cannot sue for falling and not incurring an injury.
Personal injury accidents that fall under the rule of premises liability are sometimes the most difficult when trying to prove fault. However, in Chick-fil-A, you have a high probability of security cameras that could catch video of your accident.
Potential Damages From Slip and Fall Accident
If you suffer an injury in a slip and fall accident, you may seek compensation for two types of damages:
- Economic damages include the cost of medical treatment, the future cost of medical treatment, lost wages, future lost wages, loss of earning capacity, property damage, and any other out-of-pocket expenses associated with your accident
- Non-economic damages include pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of consortium, and mental anguish
Economic and non-economic damages are compensatory damages meant to make the person whole again after loss. Economic damages are easily calculated using medical bills, estimates for future treatments, pay stubs, recent tax returns, and any applicable receipts. Non-economic damages are more difficult to quantify, but an attorney may resort to precedent from similar cases as well as the opinion of experts.
Connecticut Laws That Apply to a Slip and Fall Case
With any personal injury case, there are two key laws that affect your case: the statute of limitations and the rule of comparative negligence. Every state applies these laws to slip and fall accident lawsuits but under varying conditions.
Statute of Limitations
A statute of limitations is the law that sets an unwavering deadline for you to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. In Connecticut, you have two years from the time of your accident to file a lawsuit, and this applies to any attempt to seek compensation for physical and mental injuries as well as property damage. If you fail to meet the deadline, the property owner can ask the court to dismiss the case, and the court will likely do so. If you make any mistakes in the process of filing, you could delay your case and miss the deadline as well. This is why it is best to file as soon as possible.
In some cases, the defendant is obviously 100% responsible for the accident and your resulting injuries. When this happens, the defendant’s insurance must pay for 100% of the damages incurred. However, there are times when both parties share fault for the accident. This is when the rule of comparative negligence applies.
The rule of comparative negligence states that the percentage of fault that the plaintiff holds for the accident reflects the percentage deducted from the awarded compensation. There are also two types of comparative negligence:
- Modified comparative negligence states that the plaintiff is eligible for compensation as long as he or she is not found more than 50% responsible for the accident.
- Pure comparative negligence states that the plaintiff is eligible for compensation even if he or she is more than 50% responsible.
Connecticut follows the rule of modified comparative negligence. This means that if the jury awards you $10,000 in compensation and finds you 30% at fault for the accident, you receive $7,000. If the jury finds you 51% at fault, you receive nothing.
How a Slip and Fall Injury Attorney Can Help
If you suffered an injury from a slip and fall accident at Chick-fil-A, an experienced slip and fall injury attorney can help you understand your rights and properly value your claim. The attorneys at Gould Injury Law are aggressively passionate about personal injury law, and we dedicate ourselves to fast results. Contact us today for a free consultation.
If you suffered injuries due to a slip and fall at any of the following commercial establishments, our personal injury attorneys could help with your case:
- Basking Robbins
- Bath & Body Works
- Bed, Bath and Beyond
- Big Lots
- Burger King
- Burlington Coat Factory
- Dollar General
- Dollar Tree
- Duane Reade/Walgreens