Case Study: Barsz vs. Max Shapiro, Inc.

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Case One: Barsz v. Max Shapiro, Inc. Ind. Ct. App. 600 N.E.2d 151 (1992) Fact: Marjorie Barsz brought negligence action against Shapiro’s Delicatessen Cafeteria to recover for personal injuries sustained when she slipped and fell, breaking her right ankle and left knee cap. Her husband, Carl Barsz brought action against the restaurant for loss of consortium with his wife due to Mrs. Barsz’s injuries. The Circuit Court of Shelby County granted summary judgment for the restaurant, and the plaintiffs appealed. The Court of Appeals of Indiana, First District held that genuine issues of material facts existed and reversed the summary judgment. Issue: Was Shapiro’s Delicatessen Cafeteria negligent in identifying and remedying the condition of the floor in the restaurant, causing Marjorie Barsz’s accident? Rule: GOLBA v. KOHL’S DEPT. STORE, INC. Ind. Ct. App. 585 N.E.2d 14 (1992) Analysis: To avoid summary judgment, Marjorie Barsz had to show that there was a defective condition in the floor of the restaurant which caused her slip and fall, and that the restaurant unreasonably failed to discover and remedy the hazardous condition. Genuine material facts existed which precluded summary judgment for the restaurant. Summary judgment is generally inappropriate in negligence cases. Trial Procedure Rule 56(C) Conclusion: A restaurant cannot be held strictly liable for a fall that occurred before having a reasonable chance to remove a foreign substance from its floor; restaurant as not the absolute guarantor of customer safety. However, summary judgment cannot be granted when a genuine material fact exists.  

Case Two: Golba v. Kohl’s Dept. Store, Inc. Ind. Ct. App. 585 N.E.2d 14 (1992) Facts: Plaintiff Stella Golba brought negligence action against defendant Kohl’s Department Store stemming from a slip and fall accident. Ms. Golba stepped on a small object on a glossy floor, causing her to trip and fall. The floor had only been swept once on the morning of the...
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