Joe Miller Negotiates Substantial Settlement for North Carolina Woman Who Fell at Entrance to Convenience Store, Requiring Surgery
August, 2012, Gatesville, NC—We negotiated a substantial settlement at mediation for a woman who was injured when she fell while exiting a convenience store. Photos of the entrance to the store taken shortly after the fall revealed that the concrete at the entrance to the store was broken and created a hazard for patrons. Yet, rather than fixing the problem, the owners merely covered it up with a mat. Although she had substantial pre-existing knee problems, depositions of our client’s Orthopedic Surgeon established that those knee problems were aggravated by the fall and that the fall necessitated her surgery. We became suspicious when the Defendant store did not provide the former store manager’s address, saying that she could not be found. We made it a point to find her. When we did find her, it became clear why the store didn’t go out of its way to get her testimony. The former store manager stated that the store owners were on notice of the problems with the broken concrete, as she told the owners about the broken concrete before our client’s fall, and the owners took no steps to repair it. In addition, she stated that other patrons had fallen and tripped on the hazardous entryway before our client’s fall.