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Church Was Not Legally Responsible for a Man Injured on Its Property

The plaintiff “did not take reasonable care” when ascending an irregular stairway.

Key point 7-20.2. A variety of defenses are available to a church that is sued as a result of an injury occurring on its premises.

The North Carolina Supreme Court ruled that a church was not legally responsible for injuries sustained by a visitor who was injured when he tripped on an irregular stairway.

The plaintiff sued church for injuries

An adult male (the “plaintiff”) visited a church for a funeral. Employees of the funeral home asked him to help carry the casket. After the plaintiff agreed, he was led through a section of the church building and then outside and down a small set of stairs.

He and three others carried the casket from a hearse to the church building, taking the same set of stairs he had just descended. The plaintiff walked sideways as he carried the casket. He watched the doorway instead of where he was stepping. He tripped near the top of the steps, fell into ...

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  • March 10, 2021

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