Slip/Fall Personal Injury Case Survives Summary Judgment; Warning Sign Related Only to Duty to Warn

In Generoso v Miller’s Ale House, No. 100655/16, 2019-03816, 2020 N.Y. Slip Op. 03897, 2020 WL 3980724 (N.Y.A.D. 2 Dept., July 15, 2020), the court denied defendant’s motion for summary judgment.

The court summarized the well-known applicable legal standard:

A defendant who moves for summary judgment in a slip-and-fall case has the initial burden of making a prima facie showing that it neither created the hazardous condition nor had actual or constructive notice of its existence for a sufficient length of time to discover and remedy it” (Sloane v. Costco Wholesale Corp., 49 A.D.3d 522, 523, 855 N.Y.S.2d 155 [internal quotation marks omitted]; see Knack v. Red Lobster 286, N & D Rests., Inc., 98 A.D.3d 473, 949 N.Y.S.2d 205). “Once a defendant has actual or constructive notice of a dangerous condition, the defendant has a reasonable time to undertake remedial actions that are reasonable and appropriate under all of the circumstances”

Applying the law, and viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the plaintiff (as it must in this procedural stage), the court held that “defendants failed to establish, prima facie, that the accident was not the result of Miller’s Ale House’s failure to take appropriate remedial measures within a reasonable period of time after acquiring actual notice of a hazardous condition” and that “[t]he presence of a warning sign in the vicinity of the accident scene merely satisfied Miller’s Ale House’s duty to warn of a dangerous condition.”

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