A transitory foreign substance is any solid or liquid substance, object, or item that is located in a place that it does not belong. The law regarding transitory foreign substances is part of premises liability, and its definition often arises in slip and fall cases.
Florida Statute 768.0755 states that if a person slips and falls on a transitory foreign substance in a business establishment, the victim must prove that the business knew or should have known about the dangerous condition and should have taken proactive steps to remedy it. Being able to successfully recover compensation rests on this factor.
Examples of Transitory Foreign Substances
The history behind defining “transitory foreign substances” comes from legal precedents in slip and fall accident cases. The definition arose from a footnote in the case Owens v. Publix Supermarkets, INC., where a woman slipped and fell on a banana.
Examples of what qualifies as a transitory foreign substance include:
- Melted butter (which was the basis for Ramey v. Winn Dixie Montgomery, INC)
- Clothing not on the rack
- Fruits or vegetables
Any liquid or solid substance or item that is not where it is supposed to be may qualify as a transitory foreign substance. In situations where a person slips and falls on such an object, they may have the basis for a civil action.
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Florida Law Requires Claimants to Prove Fault
If a person suffers injuries from a slip and fall in a business from a transitory foreign substance, the victim must prove that the business either had actual or constructive knowledge of the hazardous condition.
Constructive knowledge can be proven by a victim through circumstantial evidence, including one or both of the following:
- The hazardous condition existed for so long that the business should have known about it simply through the exercise of ordinary care of their establishment
- The dangerous condition occurred with such regularity that the business owner should have been aware of it
Slip and fall accidents are known to cause serious injuries. Right now, you may be facing a prolonged recovery period, which impacts your ability to make a living and spend time with your family. For this reason, many claimants seek the guidance of a personal injury lawyer, since their field lends them knowledge about how to assign liability and prove fault.
Services a Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer Can Provide
When you work with the team from Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers, you can rest assured that a dedicated legal practice is handling your case. We understand that Florida law requires claimants to prove negligence in their accident and can provide services designed to establish liability.
Some of these services include:
- Handling all communications with the involved party and their insurance companies
- Collecting relevant evidence to your claim, including photos and videos of the accident scene
- Keeping you updated on your case’s proceedings
- Negotiating for a fair settlement on your behalf
- Consulting with field experts, such as medical professionals, to gain more insight into your injuries and condition
- Estimating the value of your accident-related damages
- Serving as your legal advocate in court, if necessary
We understand that you may have many questions and concerns following your accident. We encourage you to share those details with your legal team so that we can better understand your situation.
You May Have a Limited Time to Act
If you are considering filing a slip and fall personal injury case in the state of Florida, you must file your claim within the statute of limitations deadline. Florida allows only four years for victims to bring a personal injury case for slip and fall injuries.
While this may seem like a long period, it takes time to build a case designed for success. Your legal team will need adequate time to collect evidence and, in turn, represent your interests. If you do not act within this timeframe, you may forfeit your right to pursue financial recovery for your losses.
Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers Are On Your Side
If you slipped and fell on a transitory foreign substance in a business establishment, you may be facing substantial medical bills, lost wages, and psychological distress. You do not have to go through the legal proceedings alone. When you work with Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers, we can help you understand your legal rights so that you can make informed decisions throughout the legal process.
We work on a contingency basis. When you work with us, there are no upfront costs or hidden fees. We only get paid if we are able to get compensation on your behalf. If we cannot get financial recovery for you, then you pay us nothing.
To get started, call Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers today at (855) 529-0269.
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