Huge Change in Massachusetts Snow and Ice Law!
The highest state court in Massachusetts – the Supreme Judicial Court – in the case of Papadopoulos v Target, abolished the distinction of natural vs. unnatural accumulations of snow and ice this week. Now, in order to establish a solid snow and ice case, the injury victim must show the property owner was unreasonable in the removal of snow and ice from his or her property. No longer do the old rules of natural vs. unnatural accumulation theories apply.
What this means is greater access to the courts for snow and ice victims. No longer are valid cases going to be lost at summary judgment, or at trial. Now, snow and ice victims have rights that the former snow and ice case law foreclosed. This new ruling changes everything in this area of law, and now, property owners must be more proactive in protecting against foreseeable slips and falls on their property.