Articles Posted in Premises Accidents

As winter approaches, Chicago property owners should review the rules that apply to maintain a safe property for pedestrians, guests, and business invitees. Under Illinois law, a property owner does not have a duty to remove natural accumulations of ice and snow from his or her property. This standard may seem straightforward, but many slip and fall cases involve disputes about whether the accumulation was natural or unnatural, resulting from a modification or improvement that the property owner made. Our diligent team of Chicago premises liability attorneys is prepared to help you fight for your right to compensation after an avoidable slip and fall accident.

Recently, the Illinois Court of Appeal considered a case in which the plaintiff’s slip and fall lawsuit was dismissed for failure to prove that the defendant created an unnatural accumulation of ice and snow. The plaintiff argued that this rule did not apply to her situation because she slipped on paint that was on top of a handicap symbol in a parking space in a parking lot that became unreasonably slippery, according to her complaint. In support of this assertion, the plaintiff provided an affidavit from an expert witness. The defendants moved to strike the affidavit, which the trial court granted on the basis that it was inadmissible and granted the defendant’s motion for summary judgment.

On review, the appellate court reversed, finding that the trial court should not have struck the plaintiff’s expert witness affidavit in its entirety or entered summary judgment for the defendants on the issue of whether the natural accumulation rule applied. Based on the evidence in the record, the appellate concluded that the jury could have found in favor of plaintiff’s theory that the handicap parking lot symbol was unreasonably slippery. The appellate court found that the natural accumulation rule did not apply to this situation because the main issue is whether the symbol was unreasonably slippery when it became wet regardless of whether the moisture resulted from a natural or unnatural accumulation.

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If you live in Chicago, you know that ice and snow are a serious threat to safety. Countless Illinois slip and fall accidents happen each year when property owners fail to take responsible action to mitigate the threat of injuries from accumulating ice and snow. If you were hurt on another person’s property as a result of their negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact us today to start learning about your potential lawsuit.

Recently, an Illinois appellate court decided a case in which the plaintiff claimed that he suffered injuries when he slipped on ice on a sidewalk outside of his residence. He sued the homeowner’s association and the snow removal contractor that serviced the condo complex. Under Illinois law, a plaintiff in a slip and fall case based on ice or snow must show that there was an unnatural accumulation of ice or snow or that the ice and snow accumulated unnaturally as the result of something that the property owner was doing.

The defendants moved for summary judgment on the basis that the ice and snow on which the plaintiff slipped was the result of natural accumulation and that they had not done anything to cause a greater amount of ice or snow to accumulate. The homeowner’s association also alleged that it did not have notice of water or ice pooling on the sidewalk area where the plaintiff was injured. The plaintiff responded saying that he was suing not based on the theory of unnatural accumulation of ice and snow, but on the basis that the drainage system suffered from a defective design that resulted in an unnatural accumulation of ice and snow.

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Slip and fall accidents are one of the most painful and sudden types of premises liability injuries that Chicago residents can suffer, especially in our winter months. There are many considerations that you have to make after a slip and fall accident, including whether you may be entitled to compensation from the person or company who owned the property where you slipped. As seasoned Chicago slip and fall attorneys, we are ready to help you explore your legal options and to ensure that you are treated fairly.

A recent case discussed a slip and fall accident at a bar. Reportedly, the plaintiff was leaving the bar when he slipped and fell on a patch of ice resulting in a broken leg. The plaintiff had several surgeries to address the pain, but he still experienced discomfort and reported having a limited range of motion due to the injury. The plaintiff filed a claim against the bar seeking compensation based on a number of theories including negligence. The defendant moved for summary judgment arguing that the plaintiff did not offer any evidence showing how the floor where he slipped became wet or showing that the defendant had constructive notice about the dangerous condition on the property. The trial court granted the defendant’s motion for summary judgment and the plaintiff appealed.

On review, the appellate court reversed the grant of summary judgment. The court started by reiterating that a business owner owes a duty to patrons to use ordinary care in maintaining the property in a reasonably safe condition. The court then highlighted several pieces of evidence in the record showing that the moisture at the exit of the establishment had likely been there for quite some time, meaning that the owner had a reasonable period of time to identify and remedy the dangerous condition.

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Trip and fall accidents can happen virtually anywhere, and oftentimes they happen when you least expect. In some cases, the injuries heal relatively quickly. But in other instances, the injuries may leave the victim permanently disabled or facing a long road to recovery. If you were hurt in a trip and fall case, contact our seasoned team of Chicago personal injury lawyers today to learn more about whether you are entitled to compensation.

In a recent claim, the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against a hotel corporation and a group of defendants providing conference services after he tripped on an uneven floor at the hotel location and allegedly sustained injuries to his back as a result. He alleged that the conference location had a carpeted floor, but that certain tiles underneath the carpet were missing making the floor uneven. The jury concluded that the plaintiff was entirely at fault for his injuries and the plaintiff’s motion for a new trial was denied.

The plaintiff appealed, alleging that the lower court made several reversible errors including failing to bar the defendant’s expert witnesses for not complying with procedural rules, for failing to bar an expert witness as providing cumulative testimony, for admitting evidence of the plaintiff’s prior health that was not at issue in the case, and for admitting evidence that violated the collateral source rule.

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For residents of Illinois, winter weather can bring many serious dangers, including slippery walkways and stairwells. If the owner of a property fails to account for this type of dangerous condition and to make the premises safe, you could find yourself facing a serious and painful injury. As seasoned Chicago premises liability lawyers, we are standing by and ready to help you seek the justice that you deserve for an unnecessary slip and fall accident.

In a recent appellate case, the appellate court considered whether the lower court properly granted summary judgment in favor of a premises owner in an action involving a slip and fall on an icy stairway. The plaintiff alleged that the owners of the property allowed ice to accumulate on stairs and that the defendants acted negligently in failing to keep the property safe. More specifically, she claimed that the ice accumulation was due to faulty gutters o the roof that caused an unnatural amount of water to pour onto the stairwell and freeze in the cold temperatures.

According to Illinois law, liability for a fall that results from an unnatural accumulation of ice can be based on a defective condition on the property or the owner’s negligent maintenance of the property. The trial court concluded that the plaintiff had not provided sufficient evidence to show that the allegedly faulty gutters caused the unnatural accumulation of ice on the stairs. The only evidence that the plaintiff provided to support this argument was the existence of icicles hanging from the roof. She did not testify to any other evidence indicating that the gutters were installed improperly or that they were not maintained correctly. Nor did she provide evidence of building code violations or the routine existence of icicles stemming from improper construction of the gutters.

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Hotels are an incredibly convenient way to handle vacations and work trips, but they also pose countless dangers if the owners do not maintain the premises in good working condition. Under Illinois premises liability law, hotels owe guests the highest level of care when it comes to identifying and repairing dangerous conditions on the property. If you were injured as the result of a dangerous condition at a hotel or resort, the seasoned premises liability lawyers at Therman Law Offices are ready to help you explore your legal rights.

In a recent appellate opinion, the court considered whether the lower court properly denied the plaintiff’s motion for a new trial on his claims alleging that he suffered injuries while working at a trade show at the defendant’s Chicago hotel location. The plaintiff alleged that he suffered injuries because the trade show area was covered with carpet and that there were floor tiles missing underneath the carpeted surface. According to the complaint, placing carpet over the floor without inspecting the floor or addressing the missing tiles or providing a warning about the missing tiles and uneven service constituted negligence.

After a trial, the jury returned a verdict finding the plaintiff entirely at fault for his injuries. The plaintiff’s motion for a new trial was denied and he appealed, asserting several assignments of error. First, he alleged that the lower court erred in failing to bar some of the defendants’ expert witnesses for noncompliance with Illinois expert witness disclosure laws. Second, he alleged that it was an error to admit evidence of his prior health issues because they were not at issue in the case. Finally, he alleged that the court improperly allowed evidence to be admitted in violation of the collateral source rule, which bars evidence showing that the plaintiff was compensated through insurance for medical expenses related to his or her injuries.

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slippery steps

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Although you may believe that other people’s residences and properties are safe and free of dangers, there are all too many legal actions that involve sudden slip and fall injuries in the Chicago area. As dedicated Chicago premises liability lawyers, we are ready to assist you with understanding your legal rights following an unexpected and avoidable accident.In a recent appellate action, the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against two defendants after falling while visiting their property. The plaintiff was a certified nursing assistant rendering health care services in-home. The plaintiff was working for the defendants and caring for one of the defendants’ grandparents. When the plaintiff would arrive, she would enter through the front entrance and exit through the front entrance. This required walking up and down a flight of stairs that led to the porch.

Evidence in the trial record indicated that the plaintiff became friends with one of the defendants. They made social visits on occasion, including some social visits at the defendant’s home. During one of these social occasions, the defendant’s dog was standing next to the plaintiff on the porch as the plaintiff prepared to leave. The plaintiff testified that she moved her foot when the dog came to stand beside her, and her foot went off the edge of the porch, causing her to fall down the stairs.

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knee injury

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One of the most common ways that individuals can find themselves suffering from a painful and debilitating injury is in a premises liability incident. There are many places and ways that premises liability accidents can happen, but slip and falls are among the most common. As experienced Illinois premises liability lawyers, we have handled countless slip and fall claims and we are ready to help you secure the settlement or judgment that you deserve.

An Illinois appellate court recently considered a case involving a personal injury accident that took place in a gym. The plaintiff was exercising at the facility under the supervision of a trainer when she slipped and fell on a plyometric step, which is an unsecured piece of equipment. The plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the facility, its corporate affiliate, and the personal trainer alleging negligence as well as willful and wanton conduct. The plaintiff also included a claim for vicarious liability, asserting that the personal trainer was acting as the corporate affiliate’s employee at the time of the injury.

The trial court dismissed the claims alleging willful and wanton conduct against the corporate affiliate but left the allegations against the trainer. Later in the proceedings, the trial court granted summary judgment on all of the plaintiff’s negligence claims based on a waiver-of-liability clause included in the agreement that the plaintiff signed when she joined the facility.

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There are many different ways that you can wind up injured while visiting another person’s property.  As seasoned Chicago premises liability lawyers, we have guided numerous injured guests through the process of seeking compensation from a careless landowner. In a recent appellate decision, an Illinois court considered the liability of a music festival company to a guest who was injured while attending the festivities.

The plaintiff claimed that she suffered a slip and fall injury while attending the very popular Lollapalooza music festival in Chicago during 2011. The festival company had contracted with the city park district to lease space at Grant Park for the music festival. In the lease agreement, there were terms indicating that the music festival company was required to take all steps and actions necessary to ensure that individuals attending the festival remained safe. The plaintiff’s complaint alleged that she was injured when she was attempting to exit the festival grounds and that she was injured as a result of the company’s failure to provide appropriate lighting, to manage the crowd, and to provide a safe flow of foot traffic from the festival grounds.

The music company moved for summary judgment, stating that it did not owe the plaintiff a duty of care because she slipped on mud. According to the festival company, mud did not present an unreasonable risk of harm, and there was no notice to the festival company that the mud existed. The festival company also stated that the mud was an open and obvious condition. In response, the plaintiff argued that the festival company created the unreasonable risk of harm by forcing guests to exit the festival grounds by traversing uphill through a poorly lit, tree-filled area. She also alleged that this further exacerbated the mud situation.

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Most people know that when a sexual assault occurs, the victim can press charges in a criminal case. Fewer people know that the victim can also bring a civil claim seeking compensation for his or her emotional suffering and other damages. At Therman Law Offices, our Illinois injury lawyers can assist sexual assault victims with asserting their legal rights following this unspeakable and horrific crime.

In a recent appellate decision, the court considered the applicability of premises liability in a situation involving a sexual assault at a hotel. In her complaint, the plaintiff alleged that she was a guest at a hotel in the Chicago area when she was drugged and subsequently raped in her room while unconscious. She reported having dinner in the hotel restaurant and ordering an alcoholic beverage. She alleged that the hotel security guard who also performed maintenance work was the one who drugged her drink and carried out the assault.

The victim and her husband filed the premises liability action against the hotel, the hotel’s Director of Operations, the franchisor for the hotel, the hotel group, and other defendants, including the alleged offender. The plaintiffs also asserted a cause of action based on negligent hiring and retention of the alleged offender, stating that they failed to discover that he had been arrested for soliciting a prostitute. They also asserted a cause of action for negligent training and supervision.

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