Florida is a major tourism industry hub, drawing more than $80 billion a year. Hotels, motels, resorts and other property owners get a huge chunk of that. In return, they are expected to provide a reasonably safe space for guests. Courts have grappled with how to define this, though, and there is no clear, brightline rule. Typically, the courts will take into account the foreseeability of a certain accident or injury, based on whether it’s happened before or whether the circumstances make it likely.
In the recent case of Goodwin v. Al J. Schneider Co., the Kentucky Supreme Court was asked to weigh in on whether a hotel was liable for the slip-and-fall injury suffered by a guest in a shower that was not equipped with a bath mat, as showers in other suites were.
According to court records, it was not disputed that plaintiff and his wife were attending a convention in August 2011 and stayed at defendant hotel. The day after they arrived, plaintiff slipped and fell as he was exiting the shower. As a result, he suffered injury to his knee. The bathtub was equipped with a “grab bar,” but it did not have a bathmat. After the fall, staffers at the hotel provided him with a bathmat. Later, plaintiff learned from other attendees at the convention that their rooms were equipped with bath mats. Continue reading