Slips and Falls on Exterior Stairways of Rental Premises
Slip and falls that occur on ice or snow in Massachusetts are very difficult to prevail upon. Usually, the person who fell (claimant) needs to demonstrate the existence of an "unnatural" accumulation of ice and snow. Or, put a different way, the claim must demonstrate that the landowner somehow altered the natural condition of the ice and snow into an "unnatural" accumulation. For our purposes here, let us concentrate on slips and falls on ice and snow that occur in the landlord/tenant context.
The landlord/tenant statutes that are in place in Massachusetts generally favor tenants in that landlords are held to high standards of conduct. In the context of slips and falls on ice and snow, landlords are held to a very high duty to keep exterior stairways free of ice and snow.
If the tenant can show that the landlord failed, in violation of the relevant provisions of the Sanitary Code, or in some other way, to keep an exterior stairway free of ice and snow, the tenant may have a valid claim, assuming, of course, that certain legal elements are satisfied.
To recap, slips and falls on ice and snow are tough cases to prevail upon. But in the context of landlord/tenant law, the standards governing these accidents are clearly in favor of the tenant.
Please contact me with any questions you may have about slips and falls on ice and snow in Massachusetts.