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Woman who tripped on collapsed 'wet floor' sign at casino awarded $3 million by jury

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https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/woman-who-tripped-on-collapsed-wet-floor-sign-at-casino-awarded-dollar3-million-by-jury/ar-AADCche?li=BBnbfcL

 

I'm curious what other people's opinions are on this matter.

 

Personally I think this is kind of ridiculous. 

It's a wet floor sign fallen over not a hanging sign that came out of its anchors due to gross negligence or something. 

 

At what point are we as a society responsible for our ability to remain on our feet despite very minor obstacles such as this?

 

Just seems ridiculous to award 3 million to someone who can't watch where their walking.

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I think it's fine, I don't care about a billion dollar industry having to pay up. However, when legislators pass laws or tort reform to put a maximum on what a company has to pay (no matter the level of negligence on the part of the company), well, I don't like that.

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It’s a jury award, so I trust that there is some considerable merit to the case.

 

$3M is a drop in the bucket these days...particularly for a casino.

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, Simmsy said:

I think it's fine, I don't care about a billion dollar industry having to pay up. However, when legislators pass laws or tort reform to put a maximum on what a company has to pay (no matter the level of negligence on the part of the company), well, I don't like that.

 

The court system is supposed to be about justice- what is fair.  And juries don't necessarily distinguish between billion dollar industries and small (local) businesses when returning verdicts.

 

Also the company isn't paying it (most likely (it is possible the casino is self-insured)).  An insurance company is and that insurance company (and others) is using that verdict in the context of setting prices for other companies, including ones that aren't part of a billion dollar industry.

 

And so it affects us all.


(More accurately/fully, large verdicts make it more difficult for insurance companies to operate.  It makes it harder for them to be profitable, which drives down the number of insurance companies, which drives down the supply of insurance and drives up prices for insurance on all companies irregardless of size.

 

If I'm an insurance company and a jury comes back with a decision like this and the state lets it stand and I'm insuring a local mom and pop store, I can't assume that in a similar case/lawsuit the jury isn't going to come back with a similar verdict.  And if I'm thinking about starting an insurance company, I'm going to need the funds to pay such a verdict if such a verdict does come back, which makes it harder to start an insurance company (which diminishes the supply of insurance, which causes higher prices for insurance).)

 

With all that said, I'll add two things:

 

1.  I didn't hear or know the facts of the case. I'm always hesitant to say that juries that did, came to the wrong conclusion so I'm not going to say they made the wrong decision.  IF party of their decision was it is a big company worth billions of dollars and can afford it, then it is wrong.

 

2.  I'm generally against tort reform and the government diminishing the verdicts returned by juries (but I also think that juries need to return reasonable/fair/just verdicts).

Edited by PeterMP
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Again if the casino were grossly negligent I'd agree with the verdict but this is mild negligence at best and leads to insurance fraud.

I too didn't see the facts of the case so I could be way off here but based on the article alone I'd be inclined to put this into the bad **** happens unfortunately category, instead of the someone needs to be held responsible category. 

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My mom was a store manager at Safeway many years ago.  She said they would have video of a person faking a fall and the company would just pay them off anyways because it was cheaper than the legal fees.  Such bull****.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, TheGreatBuzz said:

My mom was a store manager at Safeway many years ago.  She said they would have video of a person faking a fall and the company would just pay them off anyways because it was cheaper than the legal fees.  Such bull****.

Safeway, you say?  Be right back, gonna make a trip at to the grocery store.

Edited by PokerPacker
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22 minutes ago, PokerPacker said:

Safeway, you say?  Be right back, gonna make a trip at to the grocery store.

Dunkirk, MD to be specific. 

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Posted (edited)

She has a broken knee cap and hardware had to be put in and may require a second surgery. 

 

Taken on face value that this is true. You’re body is never the same after something like that. And who knows what the consequences of a major injury are down the road. Arthritis? Constant pain? Inability to enjoy things you once did? 

 

What if if she develops an infection from the second surgery. 

 

No, no company can do their job perfectly but they ****ing need to try. People who try to get rich quick need to think about the things I mentioned above. Esp at a casino that sees everything in the pit. ESP at a casino that prob uses face recognition to spy out ringers. They don’t want to lose $50k from a cheater in blackjack? Don’t miss that big yellow trip hazard that’ll cost you $3M.

 

$3M seems like a just verdict. You know the lawyers prob tried to settle it for less.  And someone for the casino is breathing a sigh of relief that it wasn’t $6M.

 

**** it. They’re in Vegas when this happened? They’ll probably give it all back anyway. Vegas is owned by 3 companies.

 

Edited by Elessar78

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, Springfield said:

Did the fall cause irreparable harm?

Yes it did, but falls can do that. What I would want to know is if it was gross negligence on the part of the casino. 

 

I have very little sympathy for casinos in general but that doesn't mean they should be targets for fraud just because they get rich off other people's misfortune. 

 

Like I said earlier if they installed a sign or something and it fell down and caused irreparable harm then I'd be the first one awarding her damages to make her whole again,  but spills happen everywhere all the time and signs sometimes get knocked over, it's just not negligence on their part in my opinion. 

 

Kinda like if it snows and somebody slips and falls on your walkway, if it last snowed 2 weeks ago, sure maybe you have a case but if it stopped snowing 2 hours ago then personal responsibility comes into play.

 

The casino has a reasonable expectation to keep the area safe and I believe that people also have to have a reasonable expectation to be able to maneuver very minor obstacles and keep themselves from falling over and if they can't they should not go out or at least not put the fault on anything other than just their extremely limited mobility. 

Edited by redskinss

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I'm proud to work hard, make good money, live a good life.

 

Another, very, very small part of me wonders what it'd be like to say ****it, I'm gonna fake a fall, sue, get some money and not have to work much anymore, if at all.  I probably couldn't look at myself in the mirror every morning if I did that.  But I see stuff like this and can't help but think about it.  I'm not saying this woman saw an opportunity to fake a fall and take a casino for 3 million but...she sure picked a great place to have a bad day. 

 

3 million and a busted knee?  Tempting.  

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i was on a jury for a case like this. It wasn't a casino and the woman suing wasn't asking for $3 million dollars. It's very easy to find for the plaintiff in this case. You basically have to prove that they faked it. Since it's a civil trial, you only have to find that the company was more at fault than the person who fell. So a slick floor, sign on the floor, anything really that shouldn't be there will be the fault of the company. It's not a criminal trial where you need proof beyond a reasonable doubt that they are at fault. So it doesn't surprise me that woman won. 


The $3 million sounds quite large. I know in the case I was in, they instructed us how much of the awarded amount would go to the medical insurance company. When you win a suit like this, you have to pay back the full amount of your medical bills. Maybe that's different in Ohio, but that's how it worked in NC at the time. In our case, we basically just awarded the medical fees plus a little more. It was much less than her lawyer was asking for. But as a jury, we weren't really impressed with her side either, so we awarded what we thought was fair to compensate all the medical expenses. It's possible that the $3 million was the right amount based on this particular situation. It just seems excessive. 

 

As for some of the other comments in this thread about how the casino can afford it, that's why we have people faking injuries and asking for ridiculous amounts of money. It should be about what is fair and just for this situation. It shouldn't matter how much the company makes. 

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1 hour ago, Spaceman Spiff said:

I'm proud to work hard, make good money, live a good life.

 

Another, very, very small part of me wonders what it'd be like to say ****it, I'm gonna fake a fall, sue, get some money and not have to work much anymore, if at all.  I probably couldn't look at myself in the mirror every morning if I did that.  But I see stuff like this and can't help but think about it.  I'm not saying this woman saw an opportunity to fake a fall and take a casino for 3 million but...she sure picked a great place to have a bad day. 

 

3 million and a busted knee?  Tempting.  

My sister and I enjoy talking about the hypothetical ways we could make money if we were shameless.  It ranges anywhere from faking a fall, to selling bogus supplements, to political shills (or worse, conspiracy theorists).  There’s a lot of opportunity out there for lying liars.  

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Just now, Destino said:

My sister and I enjoy talking about the hypothetical ways we could make money if we were shameless.  It ranges anywhere from faking a fall, to selling bogus supplements, to political shills (or worse, conspiracy theorists).  There’s a lot of opportunity out there for lying liars.  

 

I feel like if you're going to be a shameless money maker you gotta either risk some personal injury or sell a product that doesn't work.  Which could technically fall under being a political shill depending on how you look at it.  

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Posted (edited)

I imagine this is akin to real estate. Gotta get hit or fall in a nice area

Edited by Mr. Sinister

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Sounds like the next ES get together is going to be a trip to Tysons where we all just slip on the same floor. 

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14 minutes ago, dfitzo53 said:

Sounds like the next ES get together is going to be a trip to Tysons where we all just slip on the same floor. 

 

Flash mob where everyone falls and then yells, “ My back!”

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Not speaking to the merits of this particular case but quite a number of smaller businesses are eliminating activities or closing entirely because of the insurance burden. People suck.

 

My wife does ad hoc coaching for a few hours a week as a side gig and we are seriously considering shutting it down or creating a LLC vs sole proprietor to protect our personal assets beyond the insurance she can sensibly purchase.

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5 minutes ago, Corcaigh said:

Not speaking to the merits of this particular case but quite a number of smaller businesses are eliminating activities or closing entirely because of the insurance burden. People suck.

 

My wife does ad hoc coaching for a few hours a week as a side gig and we are seriously considering shutting it down or creating a LLC vs sole proprietor to protect our personal assets beyond the insurance she can sensibly purchase.

Could they just make people sign a waiver instead of eliminating activities?

 

Yesterday I went to a petting zoo for an adult night where they had bounce houses and go karts etc., plus alchohol.

They made us all sign waivers and that made total sense, but it makes me wonder that if they can eliminate their liability this way why cant everybody?

 

Are we going to get to a point where every single place you walk into that could possibly be responsible for your well being is going to make you sign a waiver?

 

Not even sure if waivers would be enforceable in a place like a casino or a grocery store where there are no inherent dangers and I'm sure if they were, they'd already be doing it.

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Of course they sign a waiver, but all that means is that if you are taken to court you have a slightly better position.

 

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When we ran a youth sports organization we had the parents explicitly sign a waiver separate from  the other forms so there was no doubt what they were signing.

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