Jessica Smeriglio Prevails on MSJ in Premises Liability Case

Jessica successfully prevailed on a motion for summary judgment dismissing all claims against her client in a multi-defendant, Philadelphia County premises liability action. Plaintiff claimed personal injuries after falling on a defective sidewalk. Jessica represented the former tenant of the subject property, arguing her client vacated the property one month before the incident when their lease ended and owed no duty to the Plaintiff. The current tenant/ Co-Defendant vigorously contested the motion, arguing that sidewalk defect existed and should have been repaired before they leased the property.  Co-Defendant cited a recent Federal Court case holding a former property manager owed a duty to renters involved in a house fire caused by a heater. Ultimately, Jessica prevailed, arguing the case cited by Co-Defendant was factually different as it involved a property manager who received complaints regarding the heater and sent a repair contractor to address the complaints. In Jessica’s case, there was no evidence of complaints about the sidewalk. Her client did not perform any repairs. In fact, the alleged defect was repaired by the Co-Defendant after Jessica’s client vacated the premises.