Negligent Supervision, Training, and Retention

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Spa Beauty Treatment Burns Customer's Cornea

The New York Post reported today about a beauty parlor treatment gone awry. A customer wanted to have his eyelashes tinted. The esthetician, who worked at Benefit Cosmetics Brows-A-Go-Go on Lexington Avenue and East 63rd Street, had never been trained to use the product and should have first tested it on his skin, court papers said. The man noticed the next day that his eyes were read and full of pus, and he noticed what appeared to be a burn mark under his cornea.
Read more . . .

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Contracts, Sports, & Injuries: Preventing Recovery for Others' Negligence

The attorneys and staff at Feldman, Kronfeld & Beatty enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, sailing, and playing sports. Sometimes, like our clients, we are involved with an organization that asks us to sign a contract or a waiver before participating. Those waivers, long paragraphs of little text, often have provisions that can prevent you or injured loved ones from recovering for injuries received due to others' negligence. If you are participating in a sports program, be sure to ask for copies of any contract or waiver that you signed for your own records.

A perfect example is the tragedy of 20-year-old Thomas Plotkin. In 2011, Mr. Plotkin was in India with the National Outdoor Leadership School, hiking with a heavy backpack in pouring rain next to a 300-foot ravine. He slipped on a wet rock and fell into the canyon, disappearing into a raging river. His body was never found.

Ms. Plotkin's mother sued the school in federal court, saying that Plotkin should not have been allowed to hike so far ahead of the school's leaders and that the school took too long informing authorities and a local village of Mr. Plotkin's disappearance. However, the federal judge, while sympathizing with the plaintiff, found on Friday that Mr. Plotkin had signed an agreement stating that he understood that what he was doing was dangerous. The judge said that because Mr. Plotkin promised not to sue the school in case he was injured in the inherently dangerous activities of the school, the mother could not either.

New York law is much the same; it is very difficult to prove negligence if someone is injured playing a sport (of which hiking is one), even if the injury "came out of left field." If you are injured playing a sport, be sure to speak with an experienced trial lawyer to discuss your rights and any potential claims you might have. The attorneys at Feldman, Kronfeld & Beatty are available to speak to you for a free consultation on the subject of sports or hiking injuries at (212) 425-0230 or at 

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

1st Department Alert: City’s Summary Judgment Motion DENIED Against Murder-Suicide NYPD Officer’s Girlfriend

On September 22, 2015, the 1st Judicial Department, Appellate Division, DENIED a motion by the City of New York to grant summary judgment against the plaintiff in the case of Keyla Gonzalez v. City of New York. In this case, an NYPD officer murdered his girlfriend, the plaintiff’s mother, before killing himself. The plaintiff sued the City for negligent hiring, training, supervising, and retaining an NYPD officer that had complaint of violent propensity. While the police officers testified that they have denied ever receiving even a single complaint about the offending officer’s alleged violent propensities, the City was informed on numerous occasions about the abusive conduct toward the decedent and the plaintiff.

“The negligent retention or supervision of a police officer,” said the Court, “which results in the employee having possession of a dangerous instrumentality, is similar to if not indistinguishable from the tort of entrusting a dangerous instrumentality to another . . . . The duty not to entrust a gun to a dangerous or incompetent police officer thus extends to any person injured as a result of the negligent entrustment.”

“When an officer misuses his weapon, a jury might reasonably find that the misuse was proximately caused by the government’s negligence, if proven, in supervising or retaining a police officer with known violent propensities. Furthermore, it was reasonably foreseeable that such an officer would injure a member of his own family, including his girlfriend.”

And even though the officer was off duty, the Court still found that New York has “declined to draw a bright line rule that would preclude recovery in a negligent hiring or retention claim in situations where, as here, the City employee was not acting within the scope of his employment.”

If you, or anyone you know, are the victims of brutality or abuse by City employees, make sure to discuss your potential rights with a trial lawyer. Decisions like this make it possible for those who have been hurt by employees of the City to recover against the City for failing to protect New Yorkers.

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