Oklahoma Law Firm Atkins & Markoff Receives $1.8 Million Dollar Verdict Against Olive Garden

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The Atkins & Markoff Law Firm of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma received a $1,812,500.00 verdict, Friday, December 12, 2014, in a case against The Olive Garden Restaurants. The plaintiff, Sarah Richards, was found 10% comparably negligent.

According to court documents, the case was the result of a slip and fall injury Mrs. Richards received while dining at the restaurant in October of 2009. Mrs. Richards had gone to The Olive Garden for dinner with her husband and another couple and they were seated at a table in the bar area. They immediately noticed a wet, slippery substance on the floor that appeared to be the result of a spill. They asked for it to be cleaned up and the busser who did so did not use a degreaser and mopped in an area that had been previously dry. Mrs. Richards was then told it was OK to sit back down and she took one step and slipped and fell hard on the tile floor.

Mrs. Richards severely injured her back and had to eventually undergo 4 back operations, including 3 fusions, due to the failure of 2 of the fusions to heal correctly. The Olive Garden blamed the failed fusions on Mrs. Richards' smoking habit and failure to completely quit smoking during the first 3 surgical procedures.

Plaintiff’s counsel argued to the jury that the fall was the complete fault of The Olive Garden for violating its own policies and procedures regarding spills on the floor and that Mrs. Richards’ smoking history was a pre-existing condition and she should not be penalized for it. The jury deliberated for 1:15 before delivering a unanimous verdict for Mrs. Richards. The case was heard by the District Court for Oklahoma County and had a case number of CJ-2011-6701.

Speaking about the case, firm partner Daniel Markoff commented, "We're very proud to have won this substantial settlement on behalf of our client Mrs. Richards. This was a clear case of negligence on the part of Olive Garden, and this verdict represents a major victory for consumers' rights. Although nothing can undo the victim's pain and suffering, this verdict will greatly improve Mrs. Richards' quality of life, and we hope it will also help to prevent such incidents in the future."

With more than 100 years of combined legal expertise, the team at Atkins & Markoff is proud to be a leader in Oklahoma’s personal injury landscape. To learn more about Atkins & Markoff and request a consultation, visit the firm’s homepage at http://www.atkinsandmarkoff.com/ or call 405-607-8757.

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