Slips and Falls on Snow or Ice During A Snowstorm

The ground can be slippery while it is snowing, especially if the snow is wet or icy. Sleet can be especially slippery.  If you slip and fall while it is snowing, can you sue anyone for allowing a dangerous condition? Is a home or building owner required to keep a sidewalk clear of snow during a storm? In New York, a home or building owner will not be liable to someone who slips and falls on fresh snow, ice, sleet or other precipitation during a storm.  The rule has been stated as follows in the case of Taylor v. The New York City Transit Authority:
A party in control of real property may be held liable for a hazardous condition created on its premises because of the accumulation of snow or ice only if it had a reasonably sufficient time from the cessation of the precipitation to remedy the condition.  A defendant cannot be held liable for an injury caused by a storm which was in progress at the time of the injury.
Thus a home or building owner need not clear a sidewalk or walkway of fresh ice or snow during the storm. However, there are exceptions to the rule.   If the slip and fall occurred during an ongoing storm, but the person slipped on "old" snow or ice that was on the ground prior to the current storm, liability may be had.  Additionally, if the owner created a dangerous condition by undertaking snow removal, or by other means, they could be held liable.  Finally, there may have been other additional causes to the slip and fall that may be the basis of liability such as cracks or holes in the sidewalk which may form the basis for liability. If you or someone you know has slipped and fallen on ice or snow, you should contact a New York personal injury lawyer who is experienced in handling snow and ice cases to discuss your rights. Zalman Schnurman & Miner is a New York Personal Injury Law Firm experienced in handling snow and ice cases.  For a free consultation regarding your snow and ice accident call 1-800-LAWLINE (1-800-529-5463).

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