Asper v. Haffley Case Brief

Summary of Asper, Adminitratrix of the Estate of Joni Marie Asper, Deceased, Appellant, v. Ronald
Haffley, Appellee.
Superior Court of Pennsylvania, 1983.
312 Pa.Super. 424, 458 A.2d 1364

Relevant Facts: Plaintiff’s daughter was subject to smoke inhalation due to the landlords *negligence*, in putting a window up that could not be opened in case of a fire. This would leave a *no retreat* action for any one subject to fumes. Plaintiff wants to sue for negligence in the wrongful death of Jonie Marie Asper.

Legal Issue: Whether the landlord is liable for his actions. This would consist of negligence and breach of an implied warranty of habitility, and conventional negligence. There is also tort damages that come into play later on in the case, having to do with landlords failure to exercise reasonable care to make the premise safe.

Court’s Holding the courts held that the plaintiff was able to recover for all damages due to an implied warranty of habitility for all injuries proximately caused by the landlords failure to exercise reasonable care to make the premise safe.

Law or Rule(s): If a landlord breaches an implied warranty of habitability, either directly or indirectly, and injures a tenant or guest of tenant, he is ultimately responsible and tort action can also be taken into account against him/her.

Court Rationale: for a plaintiff to recover, they must prove in addition to negligence, the landlord’s breach of an implied warranty of livability. The landlord has to provide a safe and livable condition for the tenant. In order for the tenant to recover there has to be a two prong test. One did the landlord breach a “warranty of habitility" and/or did he breach conventional negligence?

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