Senior Partner, Sean F.X. Dugan, Associate, Emma B. Glazer, and Associate Nicole S. Barresi’s motion for summary judgment on behalf of a commercial landlord and dialysis clinic tenant was granted in this Essex County action dismissing all claims. This case involved a subcontractor plaintiff who was allegedly injured when he stepped on a small blue electrical box while carrying equipment to install a fire suppression system on the premises. At the time of the alleged injury the premises was being renovated to accommodate the dialysis facility and none of the clients were present at the time of the injury.
We argued that our clients could not be held liable as they did not breach any duty to the plaintiff. We noted that we satisfied the burden of providing a reasonably safe premises to any third parties by contracting with a general contractor who would oversee the construction project. We also argued that a small electrical box on the floor of an active construction site for less than five minutes was a transient condition that our clients had no actual or constructive notice of and that it was not a dangerous condition under New Jersey law.
The Court agreed and found that our clients met their duty of keeping the premises in a reasonably safe condition by hiring a general contractor and appreciated our arguments that our clients are not in the business of construction and had no duty to be inspecting the premises at all times. The Court also agreed that this was not a dangerous condition that the clients had a duty to remediate or warn of due to the fact the clients were not in sole possession of the premises and that it was undisputed that they did not have notice of the transient condition.