The Turkewitz Law Firm

New York Personal Injury Attorney ♦ Medical Malpractice ♦ Trial Lawyer

Serving Manhattan, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, Rockland, Dutchess, Westchester, Nassau & Suffolk Counties
Eric Turkewitz
228 E. 45 St., 17th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Phone: (212) 983-5900

Premises Liability

A premises liability action results when a person is injured due to a failure to keep property reasonably safe.  This might occur, by example, in matters of structural failures, broken walkways or ice that should have been cleared away long before.

A critical part of proving such a case is the issue of notice: Did the landowner know about the defect (or should the owner have known)? Thus, for example, if a person slipped on a banana peel in a supermarket that had been dropped 10 seconds before, one couldn’t in fairness blame the supermarket. Such a suit should not be brought.

If, on the other hand, three different market workers had been told about that banana peel four hours earlier and they didn’t do anything about it, then it is likely a jury would find the market negligent for the conduct of its employees in failing to keep the premises reasonably safe.

One further item to consider in the analysis of such cases is whether the injured person was also negligent. This is known as “comparative negligence,” and would result in a set-off against any jury award. (Thus, a hypothetical 15% finding of comparative negligence would result in a 15% reduction of any award.)

A few examples of premises liability cases that Turkewitz has handled are below. It’s important to note that every case is different, so these are provided for illustrative purposes only:

  • $1.3M verdict from structural collapse of metal grate causing broken wrist and badly broken ankle. This premises liability matter was the subject of two trials in federal court (2010 and 2012) and an appeal to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals (2013).
  • $400K jury verdict for 24-year-old man who slipped on an icy subway stair and badly fractured his ankle (2014)
  • $100K for a NYC woman who was injured by a malfunctioning elevator. (2009)

Updated: 3/2/2016
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2011 ABA Journal Blawg 100