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Molina v. Home Depot USA, Inc.

Personal Injury

Court: US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

Docket: 21-20128

Opinion Date: December 9, 2021

Judge: Jennifer Walker Elrod

Areas of Law: Labor & Employment Law, Personal Injury

This case law update is brought to you by Freeway Law auto accident and personal injury lawyers in Orange County. The following is not one of our cases, but it is of some significance, and we thought we should share it with our readers for informational purposes. The information above is for informational purposes only and not to be construed as legal advice.

Plaintiff appealed the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Home Depot, the plaintiff’s former employer, in an action alleging personal injury claims stemming from a workplace incident. Specifically, the plaintiff alleged that Home Depot breached its duty to provide him with proper assistance, equipment, and training to safely execute “flat stacking,” a process of rearranging building materials.

The court affirmed in part, concluding that there is no genuine dispute of material fact as to the plaintiff’s claims for inadequate assistance and training. In this case, Home Depot had no duty to provide assistance that was unnecessary to the job’s safe performance. However, the court concluded that there is a genuine issue of material fact as to the plaintiff’s claim for inadequate equipment. The court explained that there are factual disputes over whether Home Depot had a duty to provide a back brace and whether the lack of a back brace was the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injury. Accordingly, the court vacated in part and remanded.

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