Retailers make a tremendous amount of revenue each year during "Black Friday" when holiday shoppers come out in full. However, with the crowds of people showing up at shopping centers, the chances of an injury on or about the store premises greatly increase.

There a number of liability issues revolving around accidents that occurs at shopping malls or other stores. The problem has likely become even greater during recent years due to increased hype and earlier and earlier openings of stores.

Retailers are advised to keep a number of things in mind to prevent premises liability injuries from occurring. Though it's not a guarantee that injuries will be completely avoided, following a certain protocol will certainly decrease the chances of injury.

Certain tips would include:

  • Monitoring the aisles to keep store areas where customers walk free from obstacles
  • Provide clear signage and instructions for customers to follow while they are shopping in the store
  • Make sure that employees are instructed about safety for both themselves and the customers
  • Keep professional security upon the premises
  • Pay an equal amount of attention to the premises outside of the store as well as the inside of the store for safety related issues

There may always be the type of accident that is unforeseen by employees and store management. However, many of the same types of accidents occur over and over again, and steps should be taken to prevent foreseeable accidents from occurring.

Slipping and falling, having objects fall upon an individual, or getting caught up in an elevator or escalator can result in serious injuries. This is especially true for children and the elderly.

With so many shoppers coming out for a single day to the stores, these places of business owe a duty of responsibility to keep its customers safe.

Source: Property Casualty 360, "5 Tips to Avoid Black Friday Premises Liability," by Marc Tepper, Nov. 19, 2012

  • All property owners have a responsibility to keep invitees safe. Please see our New Jersey website regarding premises liability questions.