Illinois Appellate Court Upholds Summary Judgment in Favor of Defendant in Work Injury Premises Liability Action

Workers’ compensation claims can be complex, especially when multiple employers are involved. As seasoned Chicago work injury lawyers, we are prepared to help you ensure that you receive the fair outcome that you deserve after suffering an injury on the job. Recently, the Illinois Appellate Court issued a decision involving an injured worker and multiple employers. The plaintiff was injured while working as a telecommunications specialist when the floor of the hospital room in which he was standing gave way. The plaintiff’s complaint alleged that the hospital was negligent by failing to provide a safe place to work, failing to inspect the property before inviting the plaintiff to perform work, by causing damage to the flooring, and by failing to warn the plaintiff of the floor’s poor condition.

The defendant denied liability and filed a third-party complaint against the plaintiff’s employer, alleging that if the hospital was found liable then the employer must also be found contributorily negligent. Other motions were filed and eventually the employer sought summary judgment against the hospital, arguing that it did not owe the plaintiff a duty to protect it from conditions on the property. The hospital also filed a motion for summary judgment against the plaintiff’s claim alleging that it had no notice of the dangerous conditions at the hospital.

The trial court denied the employer’s motion for summary judgment against the hospital on its third-party complaint. It also granted the hospital’s motion for summary judgment against the plaintiff, stating that the plaintiff had not filed a response to the motion. Finally, the court concluded that the plaintiff failed to provide sufficient evidence of the alleged defective condition of the hospital’s premises and failed to show that there was a causal connection between the hospital’s conduct and the plaintiff’s injuries.

The plaintiff’s motion for reconsideration was denied and the plaintiff appealed the grant of summary judgment in the hospital’s favor. Reviewing the record, the appellate court concluded that there was no dispute that there was no actual notice of the defective flooring condition and that no one had made any complaints regarding the floor before the plaintiff’s accident. The court rejected the plaintiff’s argument that the hospital would have discovered the defective condition through a reasonable inspection. The plaintiff could not establish that the alleged defect existed long enough for a reasonable inspection to reveal it. Notably, the floor had been in place for three decades without any issues occurring. Without any evidence showing how long the alleged defect existed, the court could not find that the hospital had constructive notice of the issue.

If you were hurt on the job, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits or damages in a civil suit. Our dedicated team of personal injury and work injury lawyers offers a free consultation to discuss your situation and the potential legal recourses that may be available to you. We will assist you in gathering evidence and ensuring that recourse is sought against all the appropriate parties. To set up your appointment, call us now at 773-545-8849 or contact us online.

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