New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Fourth Judicial Department
Parent company – Contractual obligations
Appealed from Supreme Court, Wayne County
Background: The plaintiff commenced an action after her right hand was amputated while she was cleaning a machine. She appeals from an order granting the defendants’ motion for summary judgment dismissing her complaint against Marshall Farms Group individually and doing business as Marshall Ingredients, and Marshall Pet Products. A prior order found that she was a special employee of the defendant Marshall Ingredients at the time of the accident.
Ruling: The Appellate Division denied the motion in part and reinstated the complaint against MPP. Marshall Ingredients operates its business manufacturing ingredients for food products at a facility that has certain equipment, including a large metal cylinder dyer that had spinning blades at the top of it. MPP is the parent company of Marshall Ingredients, owns the facility and purchased the dryer. MPP is not an out-of-possession landlord as a leaseback agreement did not establish that MPP relinquished its contractual obligation to maintain the facility and repair unsafe conditions.
Eric P. Smith, of Rosenberg Law Firm, for the plaintiff-appellant; Meghan M. Brown, of Goldberg Segalla, for the defendants-respondents.