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ADVISE GEORGE OF THE SUPERMARKET’S POTENTIAL LIABILITY Essay Example

  • Category:
    Law
  • Document type:
    Article
  • Level:
    Undergraduate
  • Page:
    3
  • Words:
    1662

Business Law

Premise Liability

The duty of care is a legal duty imposed or required from any party that carries out any form of business. Where human beings are involved, the person in charge is required to take reasonable care to avoid instances where others are harmed. A premise is supposed to identify reasonable and likely risks of harm and in turn, take reasonable care as a response mechanism. The concept is commonly applied in modern occupational health and safety regimes. There are three main parts that involves a safety policy including the policy statement, the responsibilities and organization for carrying out such policy and arrangements to ensure safety for all people involved with premises activities. Numerous factors are also considered in premise liability cases including the circumstance under which a visitor entered a property, the use to which a property is put, foreseeable nature of accident or an injury that occurred and reasonableness of a possessor’s effort to warn the visitors or repair the dangerous condition1.

There are five basis considerations that George is required to consider to establish the supermarket’s liability on John’s injuries. First, there is a general duty of care on owners to ensure safety and welfare of those who come to shop at the premise. Secondly, it was the supermarket’s responsibility to ensure that reasonably practicable measures are taken to control all risks and all possible injuries that might arise from within the facility. Thirdly, the supermarket’s duty of care extends to all people in the facility including their employees, visitors and contractors. Fourthly, the supermarket has a general obligation through its staffs to ensure that the conditions in the premise are not a risk to safety of all when properly used and work closely to mitigate potential risks associated with its operations. Fifthly, it is their general obligation to take care for others as well as cooperate with staff on matters of safety2.

It is the duty of the supermarket to organize its checks and cleaning for spillage in a half-hourly basis to ensure that people are not put in harm. There is a special relationship that exists between the business premise and the general public including the customers inside or outside a store. Primary judge looks at such a case to establish whether there was a causal link between premise breach and injuries sustained. Under common law, there is no general duty for a premise to take reasonable care in order to prevent third parties actions that might cause damage to another person by third parties’ deliberate conduct3. In this case, there is no special relationship that exists between the customer that had caused the glass jar to break and John who is injured by the splintered glasses. In addition, the customer that caused breakages was not identified. Consequently, the company had been negligent for not having security system that would have included staff ensuring that such customers who caused the damages was identified and held liable. That overrules any attempt to deny their liabilities by including a third party as a cause. In addition, trying to take the duty of care in the relationship that exists between Mary and John would be futile since the common law would establish that Mary was also a customer and is indirectly related to the injury (she did not cause the glass to break). John would have also suffered injuries even when closely guided by Mary as Mary would be less careful to think of broken glasses on the floor. The special relationship between the store and general public is special in its own way just like the relationship between the employer and employee.

A store staff had been in place at the supermarket. The fact that risks of harm had been foreseeable in the circumstances of the supermarket is sufficient to give rise to a duty of care as part of the supermarket to prevent harm to John. The supermarket has set particular time to attend to spillages and clean up. However, it was not sufficient to ensure harm is put at minimum level. John can possibly sue the supermarket since it had control of the supermarket. The staff would have taken reasonable care and warn John not to walk along the lane with splintered glass. That is in line with their obligation to prevent the members of public from harm and risk. When a person legally enters your property, it is considered that they have reasonable expectation that they would not be injured. The property owner or manager is thus required to maintain relative safe environment. There are many premises liabilities and they should be acknowledged. If at all the customer did not act in unsafe way, they will always have a valid claim.

Every facility owes the duty of care to its employees, customers and other people visiting it. The cases of safety should be a priority to a business and particularly the business that always has many customers visit its premises often. In each case, the court tries to establish whether the injury was avoidable. It looks at whether the business should have ensured mechanisms or put in place measures toward reasonable predictability of daily activities. The policies and strategies that are then adopted by the business act as preventative as well as corrective mechanisms that govern human conduct. Failure to ensure effectiveness means toward prevention would lead to legal obstacles being imposed to enforce mechanisms for policy adoption in a predictable way. The party that does not apply the policies and its duties is responsible for the failures and causes of injuries to the other party takes responsibilities for any failure to act that jeopardizes other parties safety and interests4.

John’s poor vision might not be a factor to consider for the supermarket to deny the claim. Oftentimes, premises like supermarket serves all people irrespective of their disabilities and other limiting factors. John as a customer may not be blamed by assertion that he would have been more careful. It is impossible to deny the claim. The facts have to establish whether the supermarket was negligent. What is to be determined at this stage is whether John retained a lasting injury from the glass cuts that might affect his capacity to work or income in any way. Generally, there are requirements needed to follow up with the doctors to establish clear documentation of injury, treatment and the prognosis for injury.

The legal theory related to premise liability would eventually hold the supermarket liable for injuries that occurred in the property. Liability would be determined by procedures and laws applicable. Generally, the law of state in line with premise liability will determine the fate of the supermarket. Damages that might result in accordance to the procedures of the state might be low as this is a general procedure that applies to all cases. On the other hand, the court might focus primarily on the status of the injured customer to determine liability. In this case, the supermarket has less ground to deny responsibility for the injury due to John’s state, physically challenged and thus not in a position to identify slightest errors that were caused by supermarket’s carelessness5.

At the same time, the case might be determined by focusing on activities of the customer and the supermarket as well as the condition of their property. John’s status is equivalent to an invitee as a customer to the supermarket. Supermarket owner had to have taken reasonable steps for their premises safety. On establishing the legal status of John as an injured person, the trend would be toward distinguishing between the person who is lawfully on a property and the person on the property illegally. To satisfy reasonableness standard that a premise own to invitees, an owner has to show a continuing duty and efforts to inspect the property and identify dangerous conditions, mend them on a timely manner or else post a warning as appropriate6.

The liability may cover a number of issues where four major areas might be covered in compensation. Probably, their insurance will cater for the expenses. First, the supermarket will have to compensate John for the medical expenses that he incurred. The exact amount charged for diagnosis, treatment and other therapies will be covered accordingly. Secondly, it will have to pay for any lost time that John incurred related to daily work. Thirdly, John might be accorded some more money for future medical expenses. Sometimes it is established that the injured person might experience pains or need to get medical checkup in relation to a past injury. The foreseen medical expenses will be covered as part of damages. Fourthly, John can demand for some more amounts for pain and suffering. Depending on severity of the injury, he can add some amount and submit to the insurer to pay. Failure to do so would require John to contact a personal injury attorney and attorney expenses will also be paid by the supermarket.

Bibliography

Arndt, Audra Annette. «Evolution of Michigan’s Open and Obvious Doctrine in Premises Liability and Recreational Activities Cases and the Lessening of Liability for Defendants, The.» U. Det. Mercy L. Rev. 81 (2003): 191.

Lesandu Blacktown Pty Ltd v G [2013] NSWCA 8 (8 February 2013).

Weissenberger, Glen, and Barbara McFarland. The Law of Premises Liability. LexisNexis, 2013.

1
Arndt, Audra Annette. «Evolution of Michigan’s Open and Obvious Doctrine in Premises Liability and Recreational Activities Cases and the Lessening of Liability for Defendants, The.» U. Det. Mercy L. Rev. 81 (2003): 191.

2
Weissenberger, Glen, and Barbara McFarland. The Law of Premises Liability. LexisNexis, 2013.

3
Lesandu Blacktown Pty Ltd v G [2013] NSWCA 8 (8 February 2013).

4
Lesandu Blacktown Pty Ltd v G [2013] NSWCA 8 (8 February 2013).

5
Weissenberger, Glen, and Barbara McFarland. The Law of Premises Liability. LexisNexis, 2013.

6
Arndt, Audra Annette. «Evolution of Michigan’s Open and Obvious Doctrine in Premises Liability and Recreational Activities Cases and the Lessening of Liability for Defendants, The.» U. Det. Mercy L. Rev. 81 (2003): 191.