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Young v. Prizm Asset Mgmt. Co.

Superior Court of Pennsylvania

September 9, 2014

SHARON AND JAMES YOUNG, Appellants
v.
PRIZM ASSET MANAGEMENT COMPANY, STEAMTOWN MALL PARTNERS, LP AND THE MALL AT STEAMTOWN, Appellee

Appeal from the Order Entered on November 4, 2013. In the Court of Common Pleas of Lackawanna County. Civil Division at No.: 2010 Civil 8445. Before SAXTON, J.

Scott E. Schermerhorn, Scranton, for appellants.

Daniel D. Stofko, Scrant, for appellee.

BEFORE: LAZARUS, J., WECHT, J., and MUSMANNO, J.

OPINION

Page 595

WECHT, J.:

Sharon and James Young[1] appeal the trial court's November 4, 2013 order granting summary judgment to Prizm Asset Management Company, Steamtown Mall Partners, L.P., and the Mall at Steamtown (collectively, " Steamtown Mall" or " the Mall" ) in this premises liability action. We reverse.

The trial court has provided the following summary of the factual and procedural history of this case:

On November 24, 2010, [Young] filed a complaint against [Steamtown Mall] resulting from an assault on Young in the parking garage of Steamtown Mall in February 2009. Young, an employee of The Children's Place, a tenant of Steamtown Mall, was reporting to work at approximately 12:45 p.m. on February 6, 2009, when she was attacked by an unknown, unidentified assailant, who is alleged to have attempted to steal her car. The assault left Young with various injuries for which she alleges Steamtown Mall is liable.
After the completion of discovery, Steamtown Mall filed a Motion for Summary Judgment, alleging [that] it

Page 596

breached no duty to Young in failing to ensure her safety from an unanticipated criminal assault in an area open to the general public, and that no act or omission on behalf of Steamtown Mall was the cause of Young's injuries.

Trial Court Opinion (" T.C.O." ), 11/4/2013, at 1-2.

On November 4, 2013, the trial court granted Steamtown Mall's motion for summary judgment. On November 14, 2013, Young filed a timely notice of appeal. The trial court did not order Young to file a concise statement of errors complained of on appeal pursuant to Pa.R.A.P. 1925(b). The trial court did not file an opinion pursuant to Pa.R.A.P. 1925(a).[2]

Young presents the following issue for our review: " Whether the trial court erred in granting [Steamtown Mall's] motion for summary judgment." Brief for Young at 4.

Summary judgment motions are governed by Pa.R.C.P. 1035.2:

After the relevant pleadings are closed, but within such time as not to unreasonably delay trial, any party may move for summary judgment in whole or in part as a matter of law
(1) whenever there is no genuine issue of any material fact as to a necessary element of the cause of action or defense which could be established by additional discovery or expert report, or
(2) if, after the completion of discovery relevant to the motion, including the production of expert reports, an adverse party who will bear the burden of proof at trial has failed to produce evidence of facts essential to the cause of action or defense which ...

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