A plaintiff, a tenant in a 2-family home, claimed that his absentee landlord was negligent in failing to adequately clear snow and ice from the home’s front steps. As a result, the plaintiff allegedly slipped and fell on ice causing him to sustain a meniscus tear in his knee for which he sought to recover damages from the landlord.
At trial, the evidence showed that it had snowed over 14 inches three days before the alleged fall. As to the defense of the landlord, Mr. Cullen established through the evidence at trial, that the landlord’s nephew regularly removed snow and ice as needed from the premises and that he had properly done so after the last storm. The defense also maintained that the plaintiff’s alleged fall did not actually occur on the front steps as was being alleged by the plaintiff. In this regard, Mr. Cullen used the records from a P.T. visit approximately one month before the alleged fall that demonstrated that the plaintiff had actually been injured during the therapy. The plaintiff maintained that the P.T. records were inaccurate. Following deliberations, a Schenectady County jury returned a defense verdict in favor of the defendant/landlord and against the plaintiff.