The First Department, reversing the directed verdict, determined the proof demonstrated water leaking from the ceiling onto the floor was a recurrent dangerous condition which was not addressed by the landlord. The First Department also held that a witness for the plaintiff, who was defendant’s employee at the time of the accident, should have been allowed to testify:
Plaintiff’s trial evidence established prima facie that defendant had constructive notice of the water on the floor of the lobby of its building on which plaintiff allegedly slipped and fell … . Plaintiff testified that at least four times before his accident, every few months, he observed water leaking from the ceiling onto the floor below in the area where he fell. His former girlfriend, with whom he lived in the building, testified that before the date of the accident “there were leaks and then afterward it was leaking again.” This testimony established that “an ongoing and recurrent dangerous condition existed in the area of the accident that was routinely left unaddressed by the landlord” … . Issues of credibility were for the jury.
The trial court improvidently exercised its discretion in precluding the testimony of Henry Soto, defendant’s building superintendent at the time of the accident, on the ground that it was prejudicial to defendant. Defendant could not have been prejudiced or surprised by plaintiff’s disclosure of Soto as a witness on the eve of trial, since Soto was defendant’s employee at the time of the accident … . Monzac v 1141 Elder Towers LLC, 2020 NY Slip Op 01243, First Dept 2-20-20