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Showing posts from December, 2015

Snow and Ice Removal and "Natural Accumulation" in Illinois

As I write this post, Central Illinois is having a severe ice storm on the heals of a very wet Christmas.  Thus I read with interest today the First District Illinois Appellate Court's recent decision in Murphy-Hylton v. Lieberman Management Services, Inc., as to the scope of the Snow and Ice Removal Act and "natural accumulation."

At Illinois common law, a landowner has no duty to remove natural accumulations of snow, but can have a duty to remove unnatural accumulations, and if undertaking to remove snow, can incur liability if done negligently.  The Act changed the common law to provide immunity for injuries sustained by a person as a result of attempts to clear snow or ice, albeit negligently.  
In Murphy-Hylton, the plaintiff apparently injured herself by slipping on a patch of ice on an otherwise clear sidewalk.  Her complaint did not allege negligent removal of snow or ice.  Instead, the plaintiff argued that her injury was caused by the defendant's negligent…