New York law requires homeowners, building owners, and retail businesses to maintain sidewalks that abut their property in a reasonably safe condition. There is also a notice requirement regarding a hazardous or dangerous condition whereby if the owner had actual notice of the icy condition or ‘constructive notice,’ then they may be liable for any resulting injuries to pedestrians. Constructive notice refers to a condition that lasted for a sufficient period that the owner should have been aware of.
Although this would seemingly immunize New York City from liability under these circumstances, the city still remains liable for an icy sidewalk if it abutted a municipal building or public walkway. City agencies could include Metro North, the Port Authority, the New York City Housing Authority, the Sanitation Department, and others who are responsible for maintaining walkways.
The City of New York is also responsible for clearing sidewalks that are adjacent to 1, 2 or 3 family owner occupied homes as well as if the slippery condition occurred on city owned properties. Of course, the city is entitled to the same notice requirements, actual or constructive, regarding the icy sidewalk if the condition was unreasonably hazardous. It also must have had a reasonable time to remedy the slippery condition.