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If You Slipped On Ice Or Snow, You Can Seek Compensation
The law in Massachusetts has recently been retroactively changed and those individuals who have been injured due to falling due to snow or ice have a much better chance of recovering for their damages and injury. The Massachusetts Supreme Court in the case of Papadopoulos vs. Target Corporation abolished the distinction of natural vs. unnatural accumulation of snow and ice.
New Legal Standard
Courts in Massachusetts now will apply to hazards arising from naturally occurring snow and ice the same obligation that a property owner owes to lawful visitors as to all other hazards: a duty to “act as a reasonable person under all of the circumstances, including the likelihood of injury to others, the probable seriousness of such injuries and the burden of reducing or avoiding the risk.” The decision simplifies Massachusetts law and will eliminate the natural accumulation defense entirely. Under this new standard, a jury will “consider whether snow and ice removal efforts are reasonable in light of the expense they impose on the landowner and the probability and seriousness of the foreseeable harm to others.”
Now the issue becomes one of reasonableness. Did the owner of the property act reasonably under the circumstances, which is the common standard for other premises liability claims.
Contact our office The Law Offices of Bailey & Burke if you’ve slipped and fallen on ice or snow. Contact our office for a free evaluation of your potential claim today at 978-368-0983.