Construction Paper Trip-Fall Case Continues

In Rajkumar v. Budd Contracting Co. (App. Div. 1st Dept. 2/5/15), the Appellate Division, First Department unanimously revered the lower court’s order granting summary judgment to defendant.

From the decision:

Plaintiff, an employee of a framing contractor, commenced this action alleging that he slipped and was injured while carrying a framed mirror when his foot became caught in a seam between pieces of construction paper laid by general contractor Budd to protect a newly installed floor during a hotel lobby renovation project. Plaintiff alleges that Budd created the defective condition that caused his accident. Thus Budd’s arguments regarding actual and constructive notice are irrelevant. While Budd asserts that there was no evidence that the construction paper was untaped, on its motion for summary judgment, it had the burden of demonstrating that the paper was secured to the floor.¬†However, it points to no evidence that the tape covered the entire length of the edges of the construction paper, as its project manager testified was necessary or else the paper would not stay down and could be a tripping hazard. Accordingly, Budd failed to meet its burden of establishing prima facie that it properly secured the paper in which plaintiff allegedly caught his foot.

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