In Slip & Fall Accidents, Four Torn Corners of a Door Mat Provide Constructive Notice of Hazardous Conditions

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Plaintiff allegedly slipped & fell on a mat situated outside the door of his apartment building while exiting sustaining injuries. Defendant moved for summary judgment dismissing the complaint on the ground that it neither created the hazard or had actual or constructive notice of the alleged hazardous condition. The Supreme Court denied the motion and the Appellate Division, Second Department, affirmed.

According to the plaintiff’s testimony, submitted by the defendant in support of its motion, “all four corners of the mat, which had been on the premises ‘for a very long time’, were turned up, and the mat would frequently move out of its position when he would step on it, causing him to have to reposition it.”

Defendant did not provide any evidence as to when the mat was last inspected prior to the accident, “as opposed to the last time the superintendant walked over it”, thus, it failed to make a prima facie showing that it had no constructive knowledge of the alleged hazardous condition.

Baratta v. Edon Roc NY, LLC, NYLJ, 5/4/12, 32:6