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Under New York premises liability law, property owners and occupiers have a duty to protect others from unsafe conditions. At the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel a New York premises liability attorney will work hard to hold these property owners accountable when they fail to uphold these obligations and another individual is injured as a result. Whether you slipped and fell in a parking lot, or were injured due to poor lighting or security, our firm will have the resources necessary to seek maximum compensation on your behalf.

Were you injured on another’s property? Contact the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel today to find out if you are entitled to financial compensation for medical bills and other damages. Call us at 516-742-0400 to schedule your free consultation.

New York Premises Liability Accidents

Premises liability cases in New York can arise from a number of accidents in hotels, shopping malls, grocery stores and other public property. At our firm, an attorney can assist in a number of premises liability matters, including those involving:

  •     Ceiling Fall Down Accidents
  •     Slip‑and Fall‑Accidents
  •     Negligent Security
  •     Defective Stairs/Inadequate Lighting
  •     Supermarket & Retail Store Accidents
  •     Fire Safety Issues & Code Violations
  •     Drowning Accidents
  •     Elevator Accidents
  •     Road Design Accidents

This list is not exhaustive, as slip‑and‑fall accidents in New York can occur on many types of public properties, including the areas surrounding construction sites.          

Ceiling Fall-Down Accidents

The experienced New York ceiling fall down legal team at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel have represented numerous victims who have had a ceiling collapse on them through the negligence of an unscrupulous, greedy, profit centered landlord and property managers. These primarily residential and multi-family landlords and their management companies are almost always too cheap to hire a licensed plumber as required by the laws in New York to repair major pipes that are leaking. When a ceiling collapses it can result in serious injuries or even death for victims. The ceilings collapse for a number of reasons which include but are not limited to; leaking pipes that weaken the ceiling as well as old and/or rotted supports. The building owner and property manager may be held responsible for injuries caused by the ceiling collapse. The experienced New York ceiling fall down legal team at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel have handled numerous ceiling fall down cases in the five (5) boroughs of New York City and its surrounding areas. Although rare, the experienced ceiling fall down legal team at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel have obtained summary judgment against property owners and managers in multiple ceiling fall down cases.

How to Identify and Avoid a Potential Falling Ceiling

Many older apartments in New York have plaster walls and ceilings, which differ from modern sheet rock. The plaster is attached to the ceiling joists by means of thin strips of wood called laths. The lath is then attached to the ceiling joist. Prior to the days of the cordless screw gun, most builders used nails to attach the lath to the floor joist, which have a tendency to pull away from the wood over time. The problem with this archaic system is that the wood lath expands and contracts at a much different rate than the hard plaster‑causing hairline cracks. These small cracks can be easily fixed if detected early. However add a dangerous condition like a water leak from an upstairs apartment and your ceiling is now a ticking time bomb when it finally decides to pull away from the ceiling joist.

What causes ceiling collapse

Water from an upstairs apartment or a defective roof is the main cause in ceiling collapses. Most apartments in buildings are designed with a similar floor plan. This makes it more economical for the builder to run all the water lines on one side of the building. Therefore your upstairs neighbors bathroom is most likely directly above your bathroom and their kitchen is directly above your kitchen, etc. Once your upstairs neighbors sink leaks, tub overflows, has defective grouting around tub or tile work, or has a defective water line in the walls, the water will find its way to your ceiling and saturate the wood lath and plaster. This will cause softening of the wood and put extra weight on the plaster causing the nails to eventually pull away from the floor joist. That’s when those little cracks in the plaster (that went unaddressed) start to provide an escape route for the trapped water and begin to leak. Once they start leaking or dripping the cracks begin to expand and eventually large portions of plaster will detach from the wood lath and crash to the ground, often causing personal injuries to anyone standing under the vicinity of the cracks. Depending on the size of the plaster, thickness of the material, how much water it retained before the ceiling fall‑down, and how much wood debris it pulls down with it, the injuries caused could be catastrophic.

Avoiding injury

It is extremely important to notify your landlord, superintendent and even the outside management company [if your building has one], upon first noticing any cracks, drips, or dark spots on the ceiling. These could be water stains or the formation of harmful mold. When notifying the proper person for repairs, make sure you have photos of all the problem areas and forward the photos to them in the event that they make the repairs while your not home. It is very important to make your request for repairs in writing, in order to avoid any misunderstandings. A certified letter to the building owner and/or managing agent with a return receipt is an excellent choice in the event your complaints are disputed.

Notify and keep records

Most landlords would welcome the notification of a leak, since they have a financial interest in keeping their property safe and in proper repair. However, the unfortunate reality is that there are those that are considered to be “slumlords” and could not care about a tenants safety, but rather focus their concerns on maximizing profits [by minimizing expenses]. If you find yourself in a situation where the landlord does not respond to your request for repairs it is important to keep a log of all your complaints including the dates given and the names of whom you spoke to or mailed letters to. In addition, it is always a good idea in the event you are part of any government, or city program such as Section 8, to also notify them regarding the condition and habitability of your apartment.

Always seek medical attention

In the event that you, someone in your family or a loved one does become injured as a result of a ceiling fall down or ceiling collapse, the most important thing is seeking prompt medical attention. Being struck by falling chunks of plaster unexpectedly has been known to cause blunt head trauma, severe neck and back injuries, serious shoulder injuries and on some occasions even paralysis and death. Always seek the proper medical attention immediately. Some neck and back injuries can lead to permanent, debilitating injuries from nerve damage if not treated properly. Never assume it is just a simple bump on the head as this could actually be a concussion that may result in a permanent brain injury if left untreated.

Know your legal rights and options

If you believe that you were injured because of your landlord’s neglect to properly maintain your apartment or if they failed to properly address your complaints, you do have legal rights ‑even if you are not a named tenant on the lease ‑you should always contact an attorney to discuss your options.

When trying to find an attorney always make sure the law firm has the proper experience and expertise and has handled premises liability and ceiling fall down cases, as these can easily become very complicated. Stephen H. Frankel and the ceiling fall down team at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel, have successfully handled numerous claims against some of New York’s largest property management companies and landlords. If you or a loved one have been injured in a ceiling fall down call the Stephen H. Frankel and the experienced New York ceiling fall down team at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel for a free no obligation consultation.

Slip and Fall

New York property owners and managers have the responsibility to maintain their premises. When they fail to take reasonable and timely action to keep visitors safe, they may be liable for any injuries that occur in the buildings and parking lots under their care.

If you or someone you love suffered serious injuries from slipping or tripping on someone else’s property the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel is here to uphold your right to fair compensation.

Common Causes of Slip‑and‑Fall or Trip‑and‑Fall Accidents

  • Slip‑and‑fall and trip‑and‑fall accidents can occur for countless reasons. Some frequent causes include:
  • Liquids spilled on floors
  • Recently mopped floors without caution signs
  • Debris or boxes in aisles
  • Ice‑covered stairs or walkways
  • Insufficiently lit stairs
  • Unmarked potholes
  • Misleveled elevators that do not align with the floor
  • Cracked sidewalks

Call an experienced New York slip and fall attorneys at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel for a free no obligation consultation.

Negligent Security

In New York, premises such as office buildings, apartment buildings, hospitals, schools, restaurants, and bars owe a duty to provide reasonable security to those inside their property. The negligent security team at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel understand the devastation that can be caused by an assault, and we have the experience to pursue justice when a property owner could have prevented the attack by providing proper security. By pursuing a claim for negligent security, assault victims may be able to recover compensation for medical expenses, loss of earning capacity, and pain and suffering.

The law requires that property owners take certain security measures in order to ensure a safe environment for individuals who live, work, or visit their premises. Examples of inadequate security practices that may be grounds for a negligent security lawsuit include the following:

  • Failure to hire security guards
  • Failure to provide adequate lighting in parking lots
  • Failure to install security cameras
  • Failure to repair broken locks or windows

If you or a loved one have been the victim of negligent security call an experienced New York negligent security attorney at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel for a free no obligation consultation.

Defective Stairs and Inadequate Lighting 

Many times, people who trip and fall on a staircase or in a stairwell blame themselves for being clumsy and assume the accident was their own fault. This is not always true. Sometimes serious trip‑and‑fall accidents happen because of negligence on the part of a property owner or manager due to a building code violation or defective and hazardous condition.

At the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel, we will carefully investigate your case and help determine if a building owner, property manager or other party may be liable for your damages. We have an outstanding reputation for successfully representing clients in a wide range of accident and injury cases.

The Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel handles a wide range of accident and injury cases involving defective stairs or inadequate lighting in New York. Such accidents and injuries may be caused by:

  • Stairs built without a permit or not built to code
  • Insufficient lighting on the stairway
  • Wet or icy steps
  • Worn or defective stair treads
  • Uneven risers or steps of uneven height
  • Debris, tools or other materials left on stairs
  • Collapsing stairways
  • Inadequate or missing handrails

Call an experienced New York defective stairs and inadequate lighting attorney at the Law Office of Stephen H. Frankel for a free no obligation consultation.

Grocery Store, Retail Store or other Shopping Areas

Premises liability accidents in New York supermarkets and retail stores often involve slips, trips and falls resulting from improper cleanup, insufficient maintenance, inadequate supervision, lack of proper security measures and other forms of negligence. In these cases, New York premises liability law may provide the injured party with legal recourse. Such accidents may stem from:

  • Liquid spilled on floors
  • Freshly waxed floors
  • Defective escalators
  • Mis-leveled elevators
  • Poorly stacked items on shelves
  • Boxes or debris in walkways
  • Uneven or defective stairs
  • Poorly designed, installed and/or maintained merchandise display racks

New York store owners also have a duty to provide reasonable security to people on their property. When the failure to provide adequate security results in assault or injury, there may be grounds for a negligent security lawsuit. This can include assaults or injuries in the store itself or, more commonly, in its parking lot.

After examining the common causes of premises liability accidents, it may appear that dangerous and unsafe property conditions can exist everywhere. While it may seem simple to determine whether an individual is responsible for injuries occurring on their property, establishing negligence under New York premises liability law can be a difficult task.

To contact an experienced slip and fall lawyer in New York today, call our office at 516-742-0400 for a free review of your claim.