The former manager of C Morton & Sons Ltd has been awarded compensation for slipping on water in a shop and sustaining a knee injury by the High Court.

On 9th August 2012, Ligia Pop was working in the Ranelagh branch of C Morton & Sons Ltd – better known as Morton´s – when she slipped on some water on the floor by a sink. As Ligia was pushing a trolley at the time, the trolley supported her and she did not fall or strike her leg against anything, but she immediately felt a pain in her left knee.

Ligia sought medical attention and was treated with an ice pack; however she continued to experience pain in her knee and was immobile without the aid of crutches. In November 2012, Ligia was referred to Consultant Surgeon Gary O´Toole, who conducted an arthroscopy on the injured knee. The procedure revealed a tear in Ligia´s left medial meniscus and a partial tear of her anterior cruciate ligament.

Ligia underwent physiotherapy with the goal of returning to her position as manager of the store in early 2013. Unfortunately, she was unable to stand for long periods of time and had to leave her job – instead taking a job as a secretary for a taxi company. Ligia subsequently sought legal advice and claimed injury compensation for slipping on water in a shop against her former employers.

Liability was admitted by C Morton & Sons Ltd, but there was a dispute over how much injury compensation for slipping on water in a shop Ligia was entitled to due to the extent of her continuing symptoms. Ligia was issued with an Authorisation by the Injuries Board, and the case was heard recently by Mr Justice Anthony Barr at the High Court for the assessment of damages only.

At the hearing, Judge Barr was told that Ligia had worked for the company since 2008 – first as a shop assistant and then as a manager. He also heard that the injury had swelled up again during 2013 when Ligia was pregnant, and had presented difficulties for her in coping with a new born child throughout the following year. Ligia has since made a full recovery and currently runs a coffee shop.

Judge Barr said that Ligia presented as an honest witness and that, as there was no dispute between the evidence given by medical experts about the cause and extent of her injury, it was reasonable to conclude that Ligia´s ongoing symptoms had been the result of her initial accident. The judge awarded her €45,000 injury compensation for slipping on water in a shop, plus €2,200 in special damages.