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Premises liability: Man wins $7.5 million in lawsuit

Many people in Illinois often experience accidents due to their own clumsiness and inattention. Others are injured as a result of a property owner's negligence -- the failure to adequately recognize and/or correct potentially dangerous property conditions. For example, a man who recently won a premises liability lawsuit against Walmart claims that while he used to be able to play basketball several times a week, now he must use a walker due to a fall that was the store's fault.

The injured man was reportedly attempting to obtain a watermelon that was sitting in a container atop a wooden pallet. The pallet, according to the lawsuit, was not visible. Although he did not step on the palate, his foot reportedly became caught in its side opening. When he turned to his shopping cart, he fell.

Unfortunately, he broke his hip in the fall. Footage from the store showed several other people also becoming entangled in the pallet. The jury ruled in favor of the plaintiff's claims of negligence, finding that the store should have maintained safe property conditions. The panel also upheld claims of wantonness, determining that the store should have known the pallet was a potential hazard. While the jury awarded him $7.5 million, a spokesperson for Walmart has announced that the company's intends to appeal the decision.

As the plaintiff in this case states, no one expects to enter a business on his or her own two feet and leave on a stretcher. People in Illinois and across the country should be able to expect that the conditions of a commercial property, for example, are such that do not cause harm. Unfortunately, that is not always the case, and many people are left injured due to another's negligence, forcing them to pursue a premises liability lawsuit.

Source: al.com, "Phenix City man sues Walmart after fall, awarded $7.5 million", Ivana Hrynkiw, Nov. 10, 2017

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