If I got injured at a movie theater because it did not have its lights on, what are my rights?

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If I got injured at a movie theater because it did not have its lights on, what are my rights?

I fell on steps at movie a theatre causing a not too common foot break. The movie was over but there was still half of the moviegoers who had yet to leave. Still the lights were already out.   

Asked on October 19, 2011 under Personal Injury, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You probably cannot sue, unfortunately. The problem is, people are generally considered to have assumed the common risks associated with activities they voluntarily agree to do. That is, they can't sue for the injuries arising out of common risks in that activity. For example, a skier can't normally sue the slope because he fell and broke his leg--that's a common risk of skiiing. Similarly, walking up or down stairs in the dark is a common "risk" of going to a movie theatre. Furthermore, even if you could get past this hurdle, you'd have to show:

1) The theatre was too dark to allow you to see the steps (e.g. no stair, exit, emergency, etc. lighting)

2) The fall was due to the lack of light (e.g. you weren't pushed; weren't rushing for the exit; etc.)


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