In May of 2012, a family was having a cookout on the son's second floor apartment. Five of the siblings were on the deck, and when the mother came out and stepped onto the deck, the edge broke away from the building and the deck gave way to the patio below them. Upon further inspection, it was found that the deck's ledger board was not properly affixed to the building. The fasteners were not attached to the buildings structural components, instead, they were attached to water-damaged boards.
While landlords are not liable for failure to repair while the residence is under a tenant's control, the plaintiffs argued that the ledger board was not on the leased premises but on a common area of the building. They stated that the tenant could not inspect and fix the ledger board since it cannot be fixed without trespassing onto the first floor patio of another tenant. The case went into mediation after depositions of the plaintiff's experts and settled for $2.4 million.
Oftentimes, parties are reluctant to settle until the opposing understands that you are prepared to enter into litigation. Because if thus, it is essential to find a personal injury attorney who has litigation experience so that you can take your case to court if need be. Portner & Shure has our own litigation department in order to best serve our clients.