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Tenant Slips and Falls on Wet Stairway-No Warning Sign or Handrails – Settlement: $300,000

New York Jury Verdict Review & Analysis
Shoulder Injury $300,000

Supreme Court, Second Judicial District, Kings County, New York.
CALIXTE vs. 5201 SNYDER AVE. ASSOC. LP ET AL 14646/07

DATE OF VERDICT/SETTLEMENT: January 24, 2014

SUMMARY:
RESULT: $300,000 RECOVERY

EXPERT WITNESSES:
Plaintiff’s safety engineering expert: Anthony Mellusi from Yonkers, NY.

ATTORNEYS:
Plaintiff; Peter DeFilippis, Esq., Peter DeFilippis & Associates, New York, NY

JUDGE: J.L. Baynes
STATE: New York
COUNTY: Kings

INJURIES:
Plaintiff tenant slips on stairway and falls down steps – Failure to place warning sign and provide handrails – SLAP Tear of left, non-dominant shoulder – Arthroscopic surgery – Bursitis – Defendant fails to retain mop wringer despite numerous requests to do so.

FACTS:
The plaintiff tenant, in his late 30s, contended that the defendant’s employee failed to adequately wring out the mop, resulting in an excessive amount of water on the stairway. The plaintiff also maintained that the defendant negligently failed to place a warning sign and provide a handrail on both sides of the stairway.

The plaintiff established that the mop wringer which was attached to the bucket was broken and that the porter mopping the floor had used his hands to wring it out. The plaintiff elicited testimony during the EBT of a supervisor that doing so with this large industrial type mop would not be effective. The defendant maintained that the plaintiff failed to make adequate observations and walk more carefully, contending that he was comparatively negligent.

The plaintiff contended that although he had requested the defendants to retain the broken mop ringer, they failed to do so, and the plaintiff would have argued that the jury should be given a spoliation of evidence charge. The plaintiff fell seven steps. He contended that he sustained a SLAP tear on the left, non- dominant shoulder. The plaintiff underwent arthroscopic surgery. The plaintiff maintained that despite the surgery, he will permanently suffer pain and limitations and that bursitis developed. The plaintiff made no income claims.

The case settled after jury selection and just prior to opening statements for $300,000.

PUBLISHED IN: New York Jury Verdict Review & Analysis, Vol. 31, Issue 4