Courts applying New Mexico’s laws recognize the principle of res ipsa loquitor. In Latin res ipsa loquitor means the thing speaks for itself. Under this principle, the very occurrence of an accident implies negligence.
In a recent case, one of the defendants filed a motion for summary judgment seeking dismissal of all claims asserted against it. Among the arguments made by the defendant was that the plaintiff had not presented necessary expert testimony. The court denied the defendant’s summary judgment. After holding a hearing, the court was satisfied that the plaintiff had demonstrated, under the res ipsa loquitor principle, a triable issue of fact concerning whether the retailer had breached the duty of care it owed to the plaintiff.
Allegedly a person was injured by automatic doors when he went shopping at a store operated by one of America’s largest retailers. The person was using a crutch for balance when he went to the store. The crutch was hit by the door, ostensibly because an interior sensor on the door malfunctioned. The defendant retailer did not accept responsibility for the accident and the injured person sued. The defendant retailer moved for summary judgment. Having come forward with its own expert the retailer faulted the plaintiff for not coming forward with an expert.