November 19, 2020

Contact:Eric W. Boyer, Esq.
Managing Partner
305.670.1101 Ext. 1023


Trip and Fall Injury Claims – Negligence

Tanya M. Branch

Tanya M. Branch

NEW YORK ― QPWB New York office trial attorney, Tanya M. Branch, won a Summary Judgment Motion in the defense of their insured client, a national distributor of plumbing supplies. The plaintiff alleged he tripped and fell over defective, dilapidated, hazardous and dangerous water cap on the sidewalk, causing him serious injuries. Plaintiff alleged the defendant was negligent because it failed to properly inspect, install, maintain, control, manage and repair the defective dangerous, hazardous and unsafe condition of the water cap on the sidewalk.

Upon completion of discovery and depositions, the defense submitted a Summary Judgment Motion, arguing that plaintiff’s complaint should be dismissed with prejudice, along with any cross-claims by co-defendants, because the insured is a third party distributor who did not manufacture or install the water cap.  Additionally, the insured/defendant did not own, operate, manage, maintain or repair the underground water supply system in question.  Since there was no duty to maintain, the insured did not have a duty to inspect or control the underground water supply system, including the water cap.

Honorable Joseph C. Pastoressa rendered a favorable decision on the defense’s motion stating that in lieu of the evidence provided, the defendant submitted evidence it did not manufacture or install the water cap and did not maintain the sidewalk where the accident occurred.  Since the defendant had no duty to maintain the sidewalk, there was no need to address the issue of constructive notice.  The Court agreed that the defendant/insured was only a third party distributor.  Thus, the defendant made a prima facie showing of its entitlement to summary judgment.  The defense’s Motion was granted and the complaint against the firm’s insured dismissed.

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Tanya M. Branch – is the Managing Partner of the New York office. She represents contractors, subcontractors and municipalities in claims involving personal injury, property damage and construction accidents.  Her practice focuses on complex general liability and the representation of insurers and insureds in commercial general liability claims and all other aspects of personal injury litigation.  She received her law degree from Touro College Fuchsberg Law Center in 1994 and is admitted to practice in New York and the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York.

About QPWB

Quintairos, Prieto, Wood & Boyer, P.A. is the largest minority and women owned law firm in the nation with more than 375 lawyers serving clients from 24 offices in the United States and abroad across a spectrum of industries in over 40 areas of practice. Our lawyers provide representation in litigation, business, real estate and governmental law.

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