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No Notice Means No Case for Slip and Fall in Fast Food Restaurant

Premises Liability / September 10, 2020

Slip and fall claims often stumble face-first into the open and obvious doctrine. While Michigan’s appellate courts have written extensively about that defense over the last 20 years – see, for example, Wilson v BRK, Inc, 328 Mich App (2019) – defenses based on the property owner’s lack of notice tend to receive less attention. Michigan law requires that a prima facie case of premises liability include sufficient evidence that the landowner either created the dangerous condition or had actual or constructive notice of it. Lowrey v LMPS & LMPJ, Inc, 500 Mich 1 (2016). This was recently illustrated in Duenas v STC Inc d/b/a McDonalds, unpublished opinion per curiam of the Court of Appeals, issued September 10, 2020 (Docket No. 348666), where Secrest Wardle represented the Defendant in the trial court and on appeal.

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