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Slip and fall on bus leads to lawsuit

Usually when you hear the word "premises" you think of a building or stationary structure. Add that in with "liability," and you probably think of an old, dilapidated building with dangerous conditions that pose a threat to anyone. What you probably wouldn't consider when you hear "premises" is your local bus.

Unfortunately for one woman, this is exactly what was involved in her slip and fall case. She was riding on her local bus, but before she could get seated, the bus driver started to accelerate. The floor of the bus was slippery from a wet substance when this happened too, and the woman fell and suffered numerous injuries, including a back injury. The woman sued the bus company, which was a county bus company.

A jury looked at the case and determined that the bus company was 55 percent responsible for the accident that caused the woman's injury. What that meant is that even though the jury decided that $869,348 in damages were owed in the case, only $478,000 of the damages are owed by the bus company. In addition, there are laws that cap the amount a plaintiff can receive in personal injury cases related to civic institutions. That means the bus company only owes $200,000 in this particular case.

There is a lot to learn from this story, but the liability caps for cases like this are the most important. Just because you were wrong in a slip and fall case, or a premises liability case, or a personal injury case does not mean that you will reap all of the compensation awarded to you in the case.

Source: Sun Sentinel, "Jury awards $478K to woman injured in Palm Tran bus fall," Skyler Swisher, Oct. 18, 2016

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