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New York Court Discusses Proving Liability for a Trip and Fall Accident

New York is home to many hotels that countless people stay in each year. People visiting hotels typically anticipate that they will have a safe and enjoyable experience, but it is not uncommon for hotel guests to encounter dangerous conditions that cause them to trip and fall. Fortunately, many people hurt in falls can recover compensation from the owner of the property where the incident occurred. If you sustained harm in a fall, it is advisable to meet with a Syracuse personal injury attorney to discuss your rights.

The Plaintiff’s Fall

It is reported that the plaintiff suffered injuries when she tripped and fell in the hallway of the defendant’s hotel. She filed a personal injury lawsuit against the manager of the hotel and the entities that owned it, arguing that their negligence caused her fall and subsequent damages. Specifically, she averred that there was a defect in the carpet that caught her foot, causing her to tumble. The defendants moved for summary judgment, arguing that the plaintiff failed to show they were responsible for or had actual or constructive notice of the alleged defect, and therefore they could not be held liable for negligence.

Proving Liability for a Trip and Fall Accident

In analyzing the defendant’s motion, the court explained that, under New York law, a plaintiff asserting a negligence claim must show that they were owed a duty of care by the defendant, a breach of the duty by the defendant, and damages that were proximately caused by the breach. Further, in order for a defendant to be found liable for a slip and fall accident, the plaintiff must produce evidence showing both that a defective or dangerous condition existed and that the defendant either created the defect or had actual or constructive knowledge of its existence but failed to repair it within a reasonable amount of time.

A defendant moving for dismissal via summary judgment must demonstrate that no triable issue of fact exists. In turn, if the plaintiff fails to produce evidence sufficient to demonstrate that an issue of fact exists with regard to the defendant’s liability, then the court may grant the defendant’s motion for summary judgment. In the subject case, the court found that the evidence of record adequately demonstrated that there was a factual dispute regarding whether the defendant knew or should have known of the defect that caused the plaintiff’s fall. Thus, it denied the defendant’s motion.

Confer with a Trusted Syracuse Personal Injury Attorney

Business owners have a duty to maintain their property in a safe condition, and if they fail to do so and someone suffers harm as a result, it may constitute grounds for pursuing a premises liability claim. If you suffered injuries in a fall on someone else’s property, it is smart to confer with an attorney to evaluate what claims you may be able to pursue. The trusted Syracuse personal injury attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers can advise you of your options for seeking damages and help you to seek the best legal outcome possible under the facts of your case. You can contact us through our form online or by calling us at 833-200-2000 to set up a conference.

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