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The majority of the country has some form of a dram-shop law or social host liability law, imposing liability on the servers or retailers of alcohol for the acts of those who become intoxicated. These laws differ greatly from state to state and these law are not the only way victims of an intoxicated customer can seek damages against a bar or restaurant. The attached article was published in the July 2019 edition of DRI’s…
I recently wrote an article about how the natural accumulation doctrine applies inside the premises, not just outside, and that must have brought me luck because shortly thereafter I succeeded in obtaining summary judgment in DuPage County for my client based on natural accumulation inside the store. The plaintiff slipped and fell in water just after she entered the store.  The plaintiff did not report her incident until a few days later and she could…
A plaintiff’s attorney recently told me the natural accumulation doctrine does not apply inside the premises, and he inferred I was a little crazy for saying it did.  Looks like someone needs to spend a little more time on Westlaw, and it isn’t me. The natural accumulation doctrine is a wonderful thing because it is one of the most logical and practical laws in Illinois and it is generally followed by all judges.  When it…
In the Winter 2019 edition of DRI’s In-House Quarterly, I published an article that will hopefully be useful for all retail, restaurant and hospitality companies:  Violent Criminal Attacks – Preparation, Response and Action. The article addresses how companies can best prepare before violent criminal attacks take place, how to properly respond in the face of such an attack and then how to take action after an attack. A copy of the article is below.…
We usually think of sexual harassment claims involving employees who are harassed by other employees but recently the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an EEOC verdict against a retailer which involved an employee allegedly sexually harassed by a customer.   This ruling should put all retail, restaurant and hospitality companies on notice – and this may be a good time to re-evaluate those sexual harassment policies. Case Facts: The facts presented at trial were very…
One of the publications that is unique to the Retail & Hospitality Committee of DRI is the newsletter, Customer Connection, and a new edition was recently released – see the link below to view this quarter’s edition.  This edition’s articles discuss topics such as third party criminal acts with a firearm, best practices for protecting the franchisor’s brand, the joint-employer standard, spoliation issues and mode of operation. As a plug to my own project, I…
I am honored to have co-authored the cover story for the August 2018 edition of CLM Magazine – Going On The Defensive – MGM Takes Proactive Move To Determine Liability For Las Vegas Mass Shooting, But At What Cost To Its Reputation? This is the first of what will likely be several articles about the Declaratory Judgment action filed by MGM Resorts and other defendants to determine if they can be held liable for the…
The Illinois Appellate Court recently issued a decision in a case involving a slip and fall in snow, but the interesting part about the case is that it does not involve the natural accumulation doctrine.  Instead, the defendants argued the snow pile was open and obvious to obtain summary judgment, which is quite unique. In Winters v. MIMG LII Arbors At Eastland, LLC, 2018 IL App (4th) 170669, the plaintiff was a tenant in an…
Three of my favorite words to hear are  – summary judgment granted!  I am happy to report those words were heard again in a case out of DuPage County, Illinois. The plaintiff was entering a grocery store and after taking a few steps inside he claims he slipped and fell in a very large puddle of a thick, clear substance.  He did not know how long the substance was present and he did not know…
The Illinois Appellate Court recently overturned the dismissal of a criminal act of third party case.  The twist is that the offending party was an employee of the hotel where the victim was staying. In Gress v. Lakhani Hospitality, Inc., 2018 IL App (1st) 170380, the plaintiff was a hotel guest and after drinking and eating in the hotel restaurant she returned to her room, where she was subsequently raped by a hotel security guard/maintenance…