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Horvitz & Levy is a solutions-based firm focused on appellate success. We are distinguished by our commitment to responsive service and on-going innovation in the areas of civil appellate litigation, amicus curiae support, and trial strategy consultation.

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While performing circuit training exercises for the women’s swim team in the UCLA weight room, Annie Stefanec lost her balance and dropped the weight she was lifting. Stefanec’s teammate Scarlet Cann was doing push-ups near Stefanec at the time, and Cann alleged the weight hit her in the head. Cann sued Stefanec for personal injuries, alleging Stefanec was negligent.

The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of Stefanec on the grounds of primary assumption of risk. Horvitz & Levy represented Stefanec when Cann appealed. The Court of Appeal (Second District, Division Five) affirmed in a published decision. The court held that there is an inherent risk of injury from dropping weights to those in the vicinity of weight lifters, especially where, as in this case, dropping weights was standard practice in the event of a loss of balance. Accordingly, by participating in strength training together with Stefanec, Cann assumed the risk of being injured by a dropped weight, even though she was engaged in a different exercise at the time of the accident.