Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Freudenthal v. Poydras Properties Holding Co., LLC

United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana

November 7, 2017

FREUDENTHAL ET AL
v.
POYDRAS PROPERTIES HOLDING CO., LLC ET AL

         SECTION: “L” (1)

          ORDER & REASONS

         Before the Court are Defendant's motions for summary judgment, R. Docs. 39, 53. Defendant Looney & Co Associates (“Looney”) asks that its motions for summary judgment be granted, dismissing Looney from the suit with prejudice and at Plaintiffs' cost. Plaintiffs respond in opposition to Defendant Looney's first motion. R. Doc. 55. Co-Defendants respond in opposition to Defendant Looney's second motion. R. Doc. 45. Having considered the parties' arguments, submissions, and the applicable law, the Court now issues this Order and Reasons.

         I. BACKGROUND

         This case arises from injuries Plaintiff Anita Freudenthal (“Mrs. Freudenthal”) sustained on May 30, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel (“the Hotel”) located at 601 Loyola Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana. R. Doc. 1-4 at 2. Mrs. Freudenthal brings this case along with her husband, Hugo Freudenthal (“Mr. Freudenthal” and together, the “Freudenthals” or “Plaintiffs”) against Poydras Properties, LLC (“Poydras Properties”), Ares Management, LLC (“Ares”), Tudor Insurance Company (“Tudor”), Poydras Hotel Members, LLC (“PHM”), Poydras Properties Hotel Holdings Co. LLC (“PPHH”), Hyatt Hotels Corporation (“Hyatt Hotels”), Hyatt Louisiana, LLC (“Hyatt Louisiana”), and Looney & Associates, LLC (“Looney” and together, “Defendants”).

         Mrs. Freudenthal alleges that, as she entered the 8 Block Restaurant of the Hotel, a protruding edge of a bench or banquette caused her to trip and fall onto her left side. R. Doc. 1-4 at 2. Plaintiffs filed suit against the Defendants in Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans. Defendants removed the case on the basis of diversity jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1332. R. Doc. 1 at 2.

         Mrs. Freudenthal alleges that she sustained severe personal injuries as a result of Defendants' negligence, including sustained damage to her hip, knee, leg, and head. R. Doc. 1-4 at 2. She specifically claims that the placement of the furniture was negligent under La. Civ. Code arts. 2315, 2316, and 2317.1. R. Doc. 1-4 at 3. Plaintiff states her injuries required a total hip replacement which required nine days in the hospital and continuing rehabilitation and physical therapy. R. Doc. 1-4 at 2. She now seeks to hold Defendants liable for pain and suffering, emotional distress, medical expenses, disability, and loss of enjoyment of life and society. R. Doc. 1-4 at 3-4. Mr. Freudenthal was an eyewitness to Mrs. Freudenthal's accident and seeks recovery for emotional distress and mental anguish, recoverable loss of consortium and society, and for all past and future medical bills. R. Doc. 1-4 at 4. Plaintiffs additionally contend they are entitled to recover all expenses associated with their trip to New Orleans, because they were in town for a cruise but unable to attend due to Mrs. Freudenthal's accident. R. Doc. 1-4 at 4. On June 7, 2017, Plaintiffs agreed to dismiss their claims against Poydras Properties, Hyatt Hotels, and Ares without prejudice. R. Doc. 26.

         II. PRESENT MOTIONS

         a. Defendant Looney's First Motion for Summary Judgment (R. Doc. 53)

         In its first motion for summary judgment, Defendant Looney argues that Plaintiffs' claims against Looney are barred by the five year preemptive period under Louisiana Revised Statute 9:5607. R. Doc. 53 at 2. Defendant Looney is the interior designer hired by the Hotel for renovations following Hurricane Katrina. Looney argues that it meets all three potential events that could potentially trigger for the five-year peremption period. R. Doc. 53-6. First, Looney asserts that acceptance of its work for this interior design project was filed by the Hotel's owner into the Orleans Parish mortgage office on October 13, 2011. R. Doc. 53-6 at 1. Second, Looney asserts that the Hotel was occupied by its owner and opened for business on October 19, 2011. R. Doc. 53-6 at 2. Third, Looney asserts that based on the affidavit of James Looney, the services it provided were completed by October 19, 2011. R. Doc. 53-6 at 3. Because the Plaintiffs filed the initial lawsuit in the Civil District Court for Orleans Parish on October 25, 2016, Looney argues that Plaintiffs failed to file their lawsuit within the peremption period based on any of the three potential events that could trigger the period. R. Doc. 53-6 at 6.

         b. Defendant Looney's Second Motion for Summary Judgment (R. Doc. 39)

         In its second motion for summary judgment, Defendant Looney argues that Plaintiffs have failed to demonstrate that Looney breached the standard of care of professional interior designers. R. Doc. 39. Specifically, Looney alleges that the removal of a table without Looney's consent or acknowledgment caused or contributed to Plaintiffs' injuries. R. Doc. 39 at 1-2. Looney argues that in its original design there was a table in front of the bench or banquette that Mrs. Freudenthal tripped over. R. Doc. 39-2 at 3. The remaining defendants (“Hotel Defendants”) admit this table was removed prior to the Hotel's opening because it hindered the flow of traffic. R. Doc. at 27-2 at 1-2. As established in his deposition, Alex Hill, former Food and Beverage Director of the Hyatt, made the decision to remove the table. R. Doc. 39-2 at 3. Looney asserts that Hill's decision to remove the table was made without any input or consultation from Looney. R. Doc. 39-1 at 2. Therefore, Looney argues that Plaintiffs cannot establish that Looney breached a duty owed to the Plaintiffs or that any breach caused the Plaintiffs' injuries. R. Doc. 39-2 at 1-2.

         Plaintiffs do not oppose Looney's second motion for summary judgement. R. Doc. 42 at 1. The Hotel Defendants oppose Looney's motion. R. Doc. 45.

         III. LEGAL STANDARD

         a. Summary ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.