Constructive Notice of the Defect
The plaintiff, a 32 year old grocery store manager, had just dropped off his daughter at a local day care center and was walking home when he tripped and fell due to broken and eroded sidewalk with a four inch gap between flagstones. His foot became lodged in the gap and he tripped forward and was unable to brace his fall. He fell directly on his face and sustained multiple fractures to the left side of his face. He was treated at Jamaica Hospital where he underwent facial surgery to correct the orbital fracture and zygomatic arch fracture he sustained due to this fall. The defendant home owner testified to regularly cleaning the sidewalk on which the plaintiff fell. WRSH attorney Michael Fitzpatrick argued that this constituted constructive notice of the defect which caused the plaintiff's accident. The matter settled at a mediation for $150,000.