On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Essex County, Docket No. L-2044-09.
NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Before Judges A. A. Rodriguez and Fasciale.
In this negligence action against a landlord of a residential dwelling, plaintiffs Samir Baker (Baker), a minor by his mother and guardian ad litem Sherice Lott (Lott), and Lott individually, appeal from an order granting summary judgment to defendant Willye Daniels (Daniels), who was their landlord during a portion of their tenancy. They allege that Baker, suffered a neuropsychological injury as a result of his exposure to chipping paint in an apartment they rented from Daniels for approximately nine months. Plaintiffs have not raised a genuine issue of disputed fact that the exposure to the paint in Daniels' apartment proximately caused Baker's injury. We affirm.
Baker was allegedly exposed to lead paint in two apartments. Daniels rented the first apartment to plaintiffs when Baker was between six months and one year old. Daniels then sold the property to defendant Robert Peoples (Peoples), and plaintiffs continued to live in the first apartment for about ten months. They then moved out and rented the second apartment, which was owned by defendant Sunset Management, LLC, (Sunset).*fn1
In her deposition, Lott offered the following testimony concerning the location of chipping paint in their first apartment:
Q: Where was the flaking paint located within the apartment?
A: Inside [Baker's] playroom. I had actually put like wallpaper over it.
Q: So when you say inside the playroom, was it on the walls or was it on the windowsills[?]
A: It was like around the windowsills.
Q: And you said you had put something over it? . . .
A: Yeah. I put wallpaper around the walls and like around the windowsill just so like [Baker] won't be able to get it.
Q: When you moved in, do you recall seeing any paint chipping or peeling paint in any other areas of the apartment other ...