Ken O’Brien and Erin Farnham recently defended a commercial office building owner in a slip and fall claim in a Kentucky state court. The property owner contracted with a management firm to oversee the day to day operations of the building. The property management firm contracted with a carpet cleaning company and a janitorial services company. A tenant slipped in the building, and alleged that he slipped on a tile floor after it had been mopped by the janitorial service. The tenant also claimed that the carpet cleaning company had cleaned the carpet leading to the tile floor shortly before the fall, and that moisture left ont he carpet as a result of the carpet cleaning process contributed to his fall.
Mr. O’Brien and Ms. Farnham argued that the property owner did not contribute to the fall, and that it could not be held vicariously liable for the actions or omissions of independent contractors such as the property manager, carpet cleaning company, or the janitorial service. The trial court agreed, and granted our motion for summary judgment. The case went to trial against the other two defendants and the jury returned a verdict in favor of the Plaintiff.