Madison - St. Clair Record

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Trailer owners deny liability, seek to dismiss Rothman Furniture's suit alleging injury from fallen sofa

By Heather Isringhausen Gvillo | Aug 18, 2015

An Illinois couple seeks to dismiss a lawsuit filed after a sofa fell on a Rothman Furniture Store employee while he was trying to load a sofa into the couple’s trailer.

According to Rothman’s April 20 complaint, employee Brent Smith was loading a sofa onto a trailer owned by Judy and Michael Kanallakan on April 28, 2013. Smith was allegedly injured as boards between the trailer and delivery truck broke, causing the sofa to fall on him.

Rothman alleges the Knallakans were negligent in failing to maintain the trailer in a safe manner or warn the employee of possible injury if he stepped on the boards.

Judy Kanallakan filed a motion to dismiss on June 1, claiming the only liability against the defendant is that she “purportedly owned the trailer upon which Smith was injured.” However, the defendants argue that she did not own and has never owned the trailer in question.

On July 10, Circuit Judge Barbara Crowder gave Rothman Furniture 30 days to conduct discovery on the issue.

The defendants also answered the complaint on June 1, denying the allegations against them and claims the plaintiff’s alleged injuries were the result of his own conduct for failing to keep a proper lookout and exercise due care for his own safety.

Rothman seeks damages in excess of $25,000, plus attorneys’ fees and costs.

The plaintiff is represented by attorney Jeffrey Benoisi of the Law Offices of Stephen H. Larson in St. Louis.

Daniel L. Bradley and Darrell J. Flesner of DeFranco & Bradley in Fairview Heights represent the defendants.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 15-L-491

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Organizations in this Story

DeFranco & Bradley, P.C. DeFranco & Bradley, PC

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