The Connecticut Appellate Court has ruled that a ski area in New Hartford isn’t liable for an accident in 2006 that paralyzed a 15-year-old boy. The Appellate Court on Monday upheld a jury verdict in favor of Ski Sundown Inc. in a lawsuit brought by James Malaguit. Malaguit suffered spinal injuries after skiing off a jump at the ski area. He is now a quadriplegic. Malaguit accused the ski area in his lawsuit of negligently building and maintaining a snow jump.
Malaguit sued Ski Sundown Inc., in 20120. Malaguit alleged Ski Sundown Inc. was negligent in building and maintaining the Connecticut snow jump. But the jury sided with the ski area’s arguments that Malaguit assumed the risk for any injury and his injuries were caused by his own negligence. Malaguit argued in his appeal that a Litchfield Superior Court judge gave the jury flawed instructions.
Lawyers for Ski Sundown also argued Malaguit’s own negligence caused his injuries. Under Connecticut law, a jury award can be reduced if an injury victim’s own negligence contributed to the accident. But if a victim’s negligence is greater than the combined negligence of all the defendants, the victim is barred from receiving any award for his injury claims.