Securing the dismissal of a lawsuit against your client is always a win. But when the client doesn’t have insurance coverage for the type of loss and would have been on the hook for paying any damages in the suit, that win is especially gratifying.
An employee of a Nassau County public authority allegedly sustained injuries from a slip and fall at work after the office cleaning company had mopped the floor. She brought a personal injury action against the cleaning company, which in turn brought the public authority (CMM’s client) into the suit.
The CMM team, including Scott Middleton, Richard DeMaio, and Meagan Nolan, moved for summary judgment (essentially, asking the court to find that there are no facts in dispute and to dismiss the case against our client). Leaving nothing to chance, we pursued dismissal based on three arguments:
- the plaintiff did not suffer a “grave injury” (under the Labor Law, an employee’s injuries must meet the specific definition of “grave injury” for the employer to be found liable);
- there was no proof of a written contract between our client and the cleaning company, so their pursuit of contractual indemnification and contribution could not stand; and
- the cleaning company’s claims for common law indemnification and contribution also could not stand since the plaintiff did not suffer a “grave injury.”
Ultimately, all three arguments persuaded the court to find in our favor. The court agreed with our analysis that the medical experts’ submissions as well as the plaintiff’s own deposition testimony established that she did not sustain a “grave injury.” The Court also agreed that there was no proof of a contract between the public authority and the cleaning company. Based on CMM’s arguments, the court granted our motion for summary judgment – an especially important win for our client.
Learn more about our successful handling of municipal litigation here.