Pa. Superior Court Affirms Trial Court’s Entry of Summary Judgment

11/10/16

Toro v. Fitness International a/k/a L.A. Fitness International, LLC, 378 EDA 2016 (Pa. Super. Nov. 10, 2016)

On November 10, 2016, the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the trial court’s entry of summary judgment in favor of a fitness center for personal injuries sustained by a member when he slipped and fell in the locker room at the fitness center by upholding the validity and enforceability of an exculpatory clause in the membership agreement signed by the member when he joined the fitness center.  The Superior Court held that the exculpatory clause did not contravene public policy, was not a contract of adhesion, and expressly relieved the fitness center of liability for its own negligence.  The Superior Court also affirmed the trial court’s entry of summary judgment in favor of the fitness center on the ground that the member could not establish that the fitness center was negligent as a matter of law.  Specifically, the Court held that the member had failed to offer any evidence whatsoever that the fitness center had created or had actual notice of the specific condition on which he slipped and fell, that the specific condition had been present for a sufficient length of time to give the fitness center constructive notice of it, or that the floor had a tendency to be wet on a regular basis requiring the use of floor mats.