Experience, expertise and common sense.
Premises Liability / July 26, 2018
Court/Case No: Wayne County Circuit Court/17-012507-NO
Tried/Argued Before: Judge
Verdict: $0 - Motion for Summary Disposition granted
Name of Judge(s): Honorable Susan Hubbard
Keys to the Case:
Plaintiff filed this lawsuit alleging serious and permanent injuries resulting from a slip and fall on “black ice” in Defendant’s driveway. Defendant is an elderly woman in her 90s with dementia. Plaintiff worked for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and was sent to Defendant’s home to conduct a “welfare check” after an anonymous caller indicated that Defendant had not been seen in several days.
Plaintiff testified that she parked her vehicle in the street and traversed Defendant’s front lawn to get to Defendant’s front door. She met with Defendant in her home and completed the welfare check before exiting the home and using a different path down the driveway to get to her vehicle in the street. When she stepped off of Defendant’s porch and onto the driveway, Plaintiff slipped and fell on a patch of black ice.
Defendant filed a Motion for Summary Disposition based on the well-established rule that black ice is an open and obvious hazard in Michigan in the winter. Defendant also asserted that Defendant did not have notice of the black ice on her driveway, and that Plaintiff was speculating as to the cause of her fall because she did not see the black ice until after she fell. The trial court agreed and dismissed the case.
Defense SW attorney(s) Involved in Case: