& Toner, LLP, New York, NY (Marcin J. Kurzatkowski of
counsel), for appellant.
Mirman, Markovits & Landau, P.C., New York, NY (Ephrem J.
Wertenteil of counsel), for plaintiff-respondent.
Paganini, Cioci, Pinter, Cusumano & Farole, Melville, NY
(Scott R. Wein of counsel), for defendant-respondent.
C. DILLON, J.P. RUTH C. BALKIN LEONARD B. AUSTIN FRANCESCA E.
DECISION & ORDER
action to recover damages for personal injuries, the
defendant J.P. Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., appeals, as limited
by its brief, from so much of an order of the Supreme Court,
Queens County (Brathwaite Nelson, J.), entered August 26,
2015, as denied its cross motion for summary judgment
dismissing the amended complaint and all cross claims insofar
as asserted against it.
that the order is affirmed insofar as appealed from, with one
bill of costs.
plaintiff alleged that she slipped and fell on ice on the
public sidewalk abutting a Chase Manhattan Bank located in
Laurelton. At the time of the alleged occurrence, the
building abutting the sidewalk was owned by the defendant
Yahoo Green, LLC (hereinafter Yahoo). The defendant J.P.
Morgan Chase Bank, N.A. (hereinafter Chase), leased from
Yahoo that portion of the building abutting the sidewalk.
Under the terms of the lease and riders in effect at the
relevant time, Chase was required to, inter alia, keep the
sidewalks and curb in front of its premises clean and free
from ice and snow.
plaintiff commenced this action against Yahoo and Chase.
Yahoo and Chase answered the amended complaint and asserted
cross claims for common-law and contractual indemnification
against each other. In her bill of particulars, the plaintiff
alleged that Chase created the ice condition which caused her
to slip and fall. After discovery, Yahoo moved, inter alia,
for summary judgment dismissing the amended complaint insofar
as asserted against it, and Chase cross-moved for summary
judgment dismissing the amended complaint and all cross
claims insofar as asserted against it. The Supreme Court
denied Yahoo's motion and Chase's cross motion. Chase
appeals from so much of the order as denied its cross motion.
Code of the City of New York § 7-210 imposes a
nondelegable duty on a property owner to maintain and repair
the sidewalk abutting its property, and specifically imposes
liability upon certain property owners for injuries resulting
from a violation of the code provision (see Hsu v City of
New York, 145 A.D.3d 759; Zorin v City of New
York, 137 A.D.3d 1116, 1117). In slip-and-fall cases on
snow or ice, the general rule is that " [t]he owner or
lessee of property abutting a public sidewalk is under no
duty to remove ice and snow that naturally accumulates upon
the sidewalk unless a statute or ordinance specifically
imposes tort liability for failing to do so'"
(Schron v Jean's Fine Wine & Spirits, Inc.,
114 A.D.3d 659, 660, quoting Bruzzo v County of
Nassau, 50 A.D.3d 720, 721; see Bleich v
Metropolitan Mgmt., LLC, 132 A.D.3d 933, 935;
Forlenza v Miglio, 130 A.D.3d 567, 568; cf.
Administrative Code of City of New York § 7-210).
"In the absence of a statute or ordinance imposing tort
liability on the lessee, it can be held liable only if it, or
someone on its behalf, undertook snow and ice removal efforts
which made the naturally-occurring conditions more
hazardous" (Schron v Jean's Fine Wine &
Spirits, Inc., 114 A.D.3d at 660-661; see Bleich v
Metropolitan Mgmt., LLC, 132 A.D.3d at 935; Forlenza
v Miglio, 130 A.D.3d at 568; Ferguson v Shu Ham
Lam, 74 A.D.3d 870, 871; Robles v City of New
York, 56 A.D.3d 647, 647-648; Bruzzo v County of
Nassau, 50 A.D.3d at 721-722).
there was no statute or ordinance which imposed tort
liability on Chase for the failure to maintain the sidewalk
abutting its leased portion of the premises. However, Chase
failed to make a prima facie showing that it was free from
negligence. Chase failed to eliminate triable issues of fact
as to whether it undertook snow and ice removal efforts to
clear the sidewalk on the date of the subject accident, or
whether any snow and ice removal efforts undertaken by it
created or exacerbated the icy condition which allegedly
caused the plaintiff to fall (see Bleich v Metropolitan
Mgmt., LLC, 132 A.D.3d at 935; Forlenza v
Miglio, 130 A.D.3d at 568; see also Robles v City of
New York, 56 A.D.3d at 648; Legoff v 34th St.
Partnership, 305 A.D.2d 552). Since Chase failed to
establish its prima facie entitlement to judgment as a matter
of law, the Supreme Court properly denied its cross motion
without regard to the sufficiency of the opposition papers
(see Alvarez v Prospect Hosp., 68 N.Y.2d 320, 324;
Winegrad v New York Univ. Med. Ctr., 64 N.Y.2d 851,
remaining contention is without merit.
DILLON, J.P., BALKIN, AUSTIN and ...