The Supreme Court Appellate Division, Second Department, has affirmed the denial of a summary judgment motion stemming from a June 2009 automobile accident in Queens. The plaintiff filed a negligence action against the owners/operators of the five cars involved in the crash. She had been a passenger in the moving defendant’s car at the time of the accident.
In order to prevail on a motion for summary judgment, a party must show that there exists no triable issue of fact in the claim. If proven, the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. In this case, the particular defendant claimed that no issue of fact existed as to whether or not he was operating his vehicle in a negligent manner. The Appellate Division held that an issue of fact did exist with respect to the defendant’s operation of his vehicle (there was reportedly conflicting deposition testimony submitted as to whether the defendant driver failed to leave a reasonably safe distance between his vehicle and the vehicle in front of him). Accordingly, the Second Department affirmed the trial court decision denying summary judgment.
The Court’s decision can be found here.