When plaintiff or defense attorneys are faced with personal injury claims on premises liability cases, they routinely turn to Fuller’s design professionals to provide forensic analysis and expert evaluations in order to reach a successful resolution. We understand the importance of human safety in the built environment by exercising our extensive knowledge of ADA compliance, conformity to industry standards and building code requirements, safe paths and walking surfaces, illumination, workplace hazards, and building site requirements.

Each personal injury is inherently specific to the surrounding conditions and building elements. Fuller’s experts develop objective impartial assessments through a detailed investigation, comprehensive reports, and expert testimony. Investigations can include documentation of as-built conditions, review of project documents and drawings, and research into date applicable building codes and industry standards. Our in-house library additionally provides a unique resource for researching dated materials that are no longer in publication. 

Beach Property Rental Office

North Myrtle Beach, SC

  • “Trip and fall” at exterior stairs of a vacation rental office
  • Incident occurred in 2011
  • Original construction of the premises in 2007
  • Plaintiff expert for fall victim

While on a beach vacation, the plaintiff tripped and fell on brick stairs exiting from the front entry of a local vacation rental office. The plaintiff faced severe injuries, surgery, and extensive hospital bills.

Serving as an expert witness for the plaintiff, Fuller Group was retained to perform a visual survey of the subject property and to review original construction documents. We also reviewed the applicable building code and accepted industry standards. Upon completion of our investigation, we issued a comprehensive report and provided expert testimony in the case, demonstrating that the as-built condition of the stair was deficient and included violations of the applicable building code. Our findings concluded that the dimension of the stair tread in the direction of travel did not qualify the tread as a landing, and therefore handrails were required to have been installed. Our testimony revealed that the absence of handrails at each side of the stair, as required by the code, prevented the victim from having a suitable handhold and a visual cue that there was a change in elevation. Following our expert testimony, the injured plaintiff successfully settled with the defendants at mediation.

Technology Office Building Injury

Florence, SC

  • Fall occurred at exterior landing of office building
  • Incident occurred in 2010
  • Original construction of the premises in 2003
  • Plaintiff expert for fall victim

The plaintiff was an employee at a local technology company in Florence. While exiting an exterior door at the office’s break room, attempting to access an exterior patio, the plaintiff fell. The fall resulted in sustained injuries, atrophy, loss of control and function, and inability to walk adequately.

Serving as an expert witness for the injured plaintiff, Fuller Group performed a comprehensive review of available documentation, including the design documents for the building. Based on code review and analysis of the design documents, we concluded that due to the occupant load and configuration of the break room, the exterior door was required to be an accessible exit.

Fuller determined that during the design process, the architect and civil engineer failed to properly coordinate the elevation change from the interior to the exterior at the patio, requiring the contractor to install a landing at the exterior side of the door during construction. The landing at the exterior door, serving the patio, was found to be improperly designed and installed for an accessible exit, resulting in the victim falling and becoming injured. Our expert witness services and consultation with the plaintiff attorney resulted in a successful settlement for the plaintiff.