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The lawyers conclude their closing statements and now it is time for the trial judge to turn your case over to the jury for deliberations. Prior to the jury getting your case, the judge will have to instruct the jury on how to apply the law to the facts of your case. The way in which the judge does this is to "charge" the jury. The judge might give the following jury charge as it relates to the issue of commercial operation:
Commercial Mode of Operation. The plaintiff has alleged that (his/her) injuries were caused by the mode by which the defendant operated the business, in particular, by the way the defendant designed, constructed or maintained the self-service salad bar.
This is called the mode of operation rule. Under this rule, the plaintiff need not show that the defendant had notice of the particular item or defect that caused the injury. Rather, the plaintiff must prove: 1. that this mode of operation gave rise to a foreseeable risk of injury to customers, 2. that the defendant failed to exercise reasonable care to avoid foreseeable accidents created by this mode of operation, and 3. that the plaintiff's injury was proximately caused by such failure.
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