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ARTICLE ID 194881

$________ GROSS Premises Liability – Hazardous Premises – Plaintiff skateboard operator contacts broken glass on sidewalk, severing ulnar nerve on dominant right side – Although glass present for more than one day, tenant limits liability to 37% and landlord held 53% negligent

Hudson County, NJ

The plaintiff contended that as the 11-year-old infant plaintiff was riding his skateboard on the sidewalk, he encountered broken glass that had been present on the sidewalk for more than a day. The glass had been present both in front of the liquor store and a small area beyond the store, in which rental properties, also owned by the landlord, were situated. The plaintiff contended that the commercial tenant was negligent in failing to clean the area sidewalk.

The lease was somewhat ambiguous about which defendant was responsible for cleaning the area in front of the door to the landlord’s other rental properties, and the jury heard conflicting testimony about what each of the parties understood when they entered into the agreement. The landlord also argued that the area in front of his rental properties was a red herring since the infant plaintiff said he fell in front of the liquor store, and there was no dispute the liquor store was responsible for the area adjacent to its premises.

The defendant liquor store maintained that the glass was in front of landlord’s door, and therefore, not their responsibility.

The jury was aware that the glass remained for five days after accident.

The plaintiff contended that the ulnar nerve was severed, and that he will suffer permanent pain, restriction, and numbness despite surgery.The jury found the landlord 53% negligent, the tenant 37% negligent, and the plaintiff 10% comparatively negligent. They then rendered a gross award of $________.

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