Cubito v. Kreisberg

69 A.D.2d 738, 419 N.Y.S.2d 578 (1979)

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Cubito v. Kreisberg

New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division
69 A.D.2d 738, 419 N.Y.S.2d 578 (1979)

Facts

Gindele & Johnson (Gindele) (defendant) was an architectural firm that designed a residential building’s laundry room. Gindele completed its work on the building in May 1973. Rose Cubito (plaintiff) was a tenant in the building. In October 1974, Cubito was injured when she fell in the building’s laundry room. In October 1977, Cubito sued Gindele, Gerald Kreisberg (defendant), and Sprain Construction Company (Sprain) (defendant), alleging that Gindele negligently designed the laundry room, causing Cubito to fall. Kreisberg and Sprain (owners), the building’s owners, brought a cross-complaint against Gindele seeking indemnification or contribution from Gindele. Gindele moved to dismiss Cubito’s complaint pursuant to Civil Practice Law and Rules (CPLR) § 214(6) on the ground that the three-year statute of limitations expired in May 1976, which was three years after Gindele completed its work. The supreme court denied Gindele’s motion, ruling that the statute of limitations did not begin to run until Cubito was injured. Gindele appealed, arguing that it would be unfair to hold Gindele liable for injuries that occurred long after Gindele ceased any connection with the building, particularly because the building owners could have fixed any dangerous conditions in the intervening years. On appeal, the owners argued that their crossclaim against Gindele remained valid even if Cubito’s claim was time-barred.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Hopkins, J.)

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