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Landowner Not Vicariously Liable For Negligent Acts Of Independent Contractor

February 20, 2008

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In Stagno v. 143-50 Hoover Owners Corp., et al., plaintiff claimed to have sustained injuries in defendants' building when a contractor, hired by defendants, closed a balcony door on her hand. In reversing the trial court, the Appellate Division - Second Department held that one who hires an independent contractor is not liable for the independent contractor's negligent acts because the employer has no right to control the manner in which the work is to be done. Since the plaintiff failed to raise an issue of fact as to whether the defendants exercised any control over the method or manner in which the independent contractor performed its duties, plaintiff's opposition was insufficient to raise a triable issue of fact as to whether defendants supervised the independent contractor for vicarious liability purposes.
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