The First Department determined the defendant landlord’s motion for summary judgment was properly granted in this personal injury action. The property was leased to plaintiff’s employer. Plaintiff’s employer was doing construction work in the yard outside the building. Plaintiff fell into a hole dug by his employer in the yard. The lease imposed repair responsibilities on the landlord for the building only, not the yard:
The subject lease provided that defendant “shall maintain and repair the public portions of the building, both interior and exterior [and that]. . .[t]enant shall, throughout the term of this lease, take good care of the demised premises. . .and at its sole cost and expense, make all non-structural repairs. . .when needed to preserve them in good working order and condition.” Here, testimony established that the accident did not occur in a public portion of the building, but rather in the backyard that was exclusively controlled by plaintiff’s employer, thereby not implicating an area that defendant had retained the responsibility to maintain … . Similarly, the evidence demonstrated that, in actual practice, defendant did nothing to show that it had the authority to maintain or repair the accident premises … .
Furthermore, although the lease states that defendant had the right to reenter the premises to make repairs, plaintiff has failed to show that defendant violated a specific statutory safety provision, or that the hole in which he stepped was a structural defect … .
Plaintiff’s reference to an OSHA provision that was allegedly violated by defendant is unavailing, because defendant was not plaintiff’s employer … . Martinez v 3801 Equity Co., LLC, 2017 NY Slip Op 07938, First Dept 11-14-17
NEGLIGENCE (LANDLORD-TENANT, LEASE WITH PLAINTIFF’S EMPLOYER DID NOT REQUIRE LANDLORD TO MAINTAIN THE YARD OUTSIDE THE BUILDING, PLAINTIFF WAS INJURED WHEN HE STEPPED INTO A HOLE DUG BY PLAINTIFF’S EMPLOYER IN THE YARD, LANDLORD’S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT PROPERLY GRANTED (FIRST DEPT))/LANDLORD-TENANT (NEGLIGENCE, LEASE WITH PLAINTIFF’S EMPLOYER DID NOT REQUIRE LANDLORD TO MAINTAIN THE YARD OUTSIDE THE BUILDING, PLAINTIFF WAS INJURED WHEN HE STEPPED INTO A HOLE DUG BY PLAINTIFF’S EMPLOYER IN THE YARD, LANDLORD’S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT PROPERLY GRANTED (FIRST DEPT))