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Ex parte ADVANTAGE RESOURCING, INC.
(In re Hennon Hollinghead
Willstaff, Inc., et al.).
“Unlike the injured employee at issue in Ex parte Patton, however, the employee in this case did not simply allege and prove that he had suffered a fall on an employer’s premises. Rather, the evidence in this case, viewed in a light most favorable to the employee, indicates that the employee, at the time that he fell on the PVC pipe, was in the process of returning to the shop, i.e., the place where the employee reported at the start of each of his workdays, after having gone to his automobile to retrieve a two-way radio, which no party disputes was a tool of the employee’s work. The walkway that the employee used was used by other RDA workers at the time that the employee suffered his fall and subsequent injury, notwithstanding the fact that that path was marked as being impassable after the employee’s fall. That the fall in this case stemmed from a PVC pipe that had been allowed to remain in close proximity to a walkway leading to a shop at which the employee and his coworkers were to report for work each day and that the employee’s fall occurred at a time and place at which he would reasonably be expected to have reported in furtherance of the employment relationship both support the trial court’s determination that the employee’s fall indeed arose out of and in the course of his employment. See Ex parte Strickland, 553 So.2d 593, 595 (Ala.1989) (holding that employee’s injury, which had occurred after he had jumped from a fence enclosing his employer’s company parking lot after having retrieved personal items and a work tool belt from the lot, was “`naturally related’ to his employment” for purposes of legal causation under the Act; employee was covered for a reasonable time, space, and opportunity before and after he was at or near his place of employment); see also Benoit Coal Mining Co. v. Moore, 215 Ala. 220, 222-23, 109 So. 878, 880 (1926) (“`the movement of the employee in entering, at the appropriate time, the employer’s premises to discharge his function [and] his preparation to begin … his actual service'” are deemed “`naturally related and incidental acts in the course of the employment'” (quoting Ex parte Louisville & Nashville R.R., 208 Ala. 216, 219, 94 So. 289, 292 (1922))).” http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=10465126509689257340&q=slip+fall+accident&hl=en&as_sdt=4,1&as_ylo=2010
Jesse Stutts, Inc.
William H. Hughey.
“Stutts clearly had the right to dispute whether the surgery to repair Hughey’s annular tear was reasonably necessary as part of its obligations pursuant to the 2004 settlement agreement. Id.; see also Ex parte Massey Chevrolet, Inc., 23 So. 3d 33, 41-42 (Ala. Civ. App. 2009). Given the facts of this case, Stutts had a reasonable basis for bringing the dispute before the trial court for a resolution, as provided for in the Act. As previously discussed, Hughey failed to meet his burden of demonstrating that the surgery to repair the annular tear was necessitated by conditions that were a direct result of the 2002 accident. Based on the record before us, we hold that there was no evidence indicating that, in disputing its obligation to pay for the surgery—which it had every right to do—Stutts wilfully failed to comply with the 2004 settlement agreement. Therefore, the trial court abused its discretion in finding that Stutts was in contempt for “violating” the 2004 settlement agreement and ordering it to pay “contempt sanctions” of $5,779.10. Accordingly, the trial court’s judgment as to this issue must be reversed.
For the reasons set forth above, the judgment of the trial court is reversed, and the cause is remanded for the trial court to enter a judgment consistent with this opinion.”
Court of Civil Appeals of Alabama
Proving a Slip and Fall Case in Alabama
“There are many types claims made as a result of injuries on another person’s property under Alabama’s common law. These claims are commonly referred to as premises liability cases or “slip and fall,” or “trip and fall” cases. They can occur inside or outside of a building, in parking lots, sidewalks, entry ways, yards, or many other places. Typically, these claims involve injuries caused by debris or liquids on floors, falling merchandise, uneven floors or defects in floors, poor lighting, and other hazardous conditions. Many of these conditions can be traced to violations of applicable building or life safety codes.
Premises Liability cases can be some of the most difficult cases to prove under Alabama law. There are many factors that have to be considered to determine whether you have a valid claim against a property owner or business. The business or property owner is not responsible for an injury just because it occurred on their property. In order to recover, the injured person must prove that the business or property owner did something or failed to take some action that caused the injury.
The majority of premises liability cases occur at a business or in a common area outside of a business. The Alabama Supreme Court defines the duty a business owner owes to customers (or “business invitees”) as follows:
“The owner of a premises owes a duty to business invitees to use reasonable care and diligence to keep the premises in a safe condition, or, if the premises are in a dangerous condition, to give sufficient warning so that, by the use of ordinary care, the danger can be avoided.”
Kmart Corp. v. Basset, 769 So.2d 282 (Ala.2000). However, “the mere fact that a business invitee is injured does not create a presumption of negligence on the part of a premises owner.” Hose v. Winn-Dixie Montgomery, Inc., 658 So.2d 403, 404 (Ala.1995). Rather, “a premises owner is liable in negligence only if it fails to use reasonable care in maintaining its premises in a reasonably safe manner.”