Morrison Mahoney partner Douglas Price and associate Stephen Ryan recently prevailed before the Massachusetts Appeals Court following extensive briefing in a premises liability case filed by a pro-se plaintiff.

They represented the owner of an apartment building in a suit filed by a tenant relating to a slip and fall on snow and ice in one of the building’s parking lots. As a result of the fall, the plaintiff suffered a broken right shoulder, which required surgical repair.

In the underlying action, Doug and Stephen were able to persuade the Court to dismiss the plaintiff’s case for lack of prosecution when the plaintiff, who had relocated out of State, failed to appear for the Final Pre-Trial Conference. Thereafter, plaintiff filed an Appeal seeking to revive her case by arguing that the trial judge’s decision to dismiss her claim amounted to an abuse of discretion.

After extensive briefing, a Panel of Appeals Court Justices affirmed the lower Court’s decision. In the written decision, the panel cited extensively to the arguments the defense had made before the lower Court just prior to dismissal, noting that they had “armed” the Pre-Trial Conference Judge with information sufficient to act within her discretion to dismiss the plaintiff’s case for lack of prosecution.

The Appeals Court also found in our favor as to the pro-se plaintiff’s appeal of numerous other discovery rulings made by the lower Court prior to dismissal.