When you think about a trip to a local coffee shop, Starbucks is probably your destination. With more than 28,000 neighborhood locations in 76 countries, Starbucks seems to have a retail store on every corner. Starbucks is a great place to get your daily caffeine fix, to get some work done, or to connect with friends and co-workers; but if you slip and fall in one of their stores, you could be stuck with a life-long injury.
Businesses in Georgia are required by law to keep their premises safe for customers, and they could be held liable if you are injured while on the property. This means Starbucks may have to compensate you for your medical expenses, loss of wages, and possibly your pain and suffering after you slip and fall in one of their locations.
If you are injured because Starbucks fails to keep its premises safe, reach out to the slip and fall accident and injury attorneys at John Foy & Associates. Somebody will be available to take your call, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Call (404) 400-4000 and ask about your no-obligation consultation with one of our slip and fall attorneys.
More About Starbucks
Starbucks is known for its fresh-roasted coffee from around the world, but it also sells an assortment of sandwiches, pastries, and other snack items. The first Starbucks coffeehouse opened its doors in Seattle in 1971, and according to their mission statement, they aim to “inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time.”
Starbucks employees serve more than 85 million customers each week. Strict safety protocols are a necessity in such a high volume and fast-paced business, but accidents are bound to happen even under the best circumstances.
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Starbucks Slip and Fall Hazards
Slip and fall accidents occur when you lose your footing or trip over a hazard. This can happen in any place of business, but you are more likely to encounter certain dangers at a Starbucks coffeehouse. These potential hazards include:
- Dim lighting – The lights inside Starbucks are often dimmed for ambiance, but this can make it difficult to see objects in your path. This is especially true during daylight hours if your eyes need to adjust to the dim lighting conditions when coming in from the bright sunlight outside.
- Spilled coffee – Spilled coffee or other products can make the tile floors dangerously slippery.
- Bulky merchandise bins – In some Starbucks locations shelves and baskets are placed in the middle of the store to display bags of coffee, mugs, and other merchandise. These can be hazardous, especially if the store is crowded and the merchandise is bumped onto the floor, or if the bins are moved to an unexpected location.
- Loud machinery – Baristas prepare your coffee using loud machines like coffee grinders and espresso machines. If an individual is trying to warn you about a tripping hazard, you may not be able to hear because of the excessive noise.
- Chairs left in the walkway – Starbucks uses moveable tables and chairs. When another customer is finished, they may leave their table or chair in the aisleway where it could block your path and cause you to trip and fall.
Potential Slip and Fall Injuries
As you lose your footing during a slip and fall accident, you may instinctively put your arm out to break your fall. Because of this, you might experience wrist pain due to a sprained or broken wrist. Other injuries that can occur because of a fall include:
- Back or spinal cord injury
- Knee or ankle injury
- A broken bone, often in the arm or leg
- Brain injury
- Shoulder dislocation
Personal Injury Lawsuits in Georgia
Each state in the U.S. has unique laws governing personal injury lawsuits. Experienced Georgia slip and fall attorneys like those at John Foy & Associates can help you navigate these rules and deadlines to make sure you have the strongest possible case. Some legal concepts you should be aware of include:
To have a valid premises liability claim against Starbucks after a slip and fall accident on their property, your case needs to meet the following criteria:
- A hazard existed on Starbucks property, either outside or inside the store
- Employees knew about this hazard before you fell
- You were not made aware of the hazard
- The hazard caused you to fall and sustain injuries
Statute of Limitations
Personal injury lawsuits in Georgia must be filed within two years after the accident date. If your Starbucks slip and fall lawsuit is filed even one day after this deadline, it will not be recognized by the court and it will be dismissed.
Modified Comparative Negligence
If a judge awards you damages for your slip and fall injuries, the amount you receive could be reduced if the court decides you are partly to blame for your accident. Additionally, if it is determined that you and Starbucks share the blame equally or you have a larger portion of fault than they do, you will not be eligible for compensation.
What to Do After Your Slip and Fall Accident
After your Starbucks slip and fall accident, it is crucial not to say the accident was your fault, even partially. Document the scene by taking pictures and talking to witnesses, then call the slip and fall attorneys at John Foy & Associates. We will negotiate on your behalf, investigate your accident, and get you the compensation you deserve. Call (404) 400-4000 today for a free consultation. Let us put the John Foy Strong Arm approach to work for you.