Am I able to sue a property manager for lost wages?

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Am I able to sue a property manager for lost wages?

My company site has been closed for at least a week, possibly more, due to flooding on the property. The building houses several companies and all of us are out of work due to severe damage from a broken water pipe. We are not able to receive any kind of compensation from our company for lost wages. However, are we able to sue for lost wages if the burden of responsibility falls on the property manager to maintain a safe work environment? Our work is absolutely unable to be done from home and we still do not have a definitive date when we are allowed the back at work.

Asked on July 28, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, you cannot sue the property manager for this reason. The property manager does not have any duty to employees of the companies at its property to maintain/repair the site so that they can work--you are simply not a person or class of person whom the property manager has any legal obligation to, since he does not have any connection to you. Without a duty to you, you have no grounds to sue the property manager. Furthermore, even if the property manager had some duty to you, the mere fact that there is flooding would not necessarily make the property manager liable: you'd have to show that the property manager was at fault in causing the flooding and/or has unreasonably delayed repairs. Even when there is a duty to some person or persons, there also must be provable fault to impose liability.


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