Epps v. Remmel

In Epps v. Remmel, 237 Ark. 391, 373 S.W.2d 141 (1963), the appellant fell after stepping into a hole in the sidewalk in front of the appellee's place of business. The appellant argued that appellee was liable for her injuries because there was a city ordinance that required landowners to repair sidewalks in front of the properties. The supreme court disagreed, adopting the rule that such ordinances create a duty enforceable only by the municipality but do not subject individual landowners to liability for bodily harm caused to a wayfarer by the owners' violation of the ordinances. In Epps, the court cited with approval C.P. Jhong, Annotation, Sidewalk - Abutting Owner - Liability, 88 A.L.R. 2d 331. The annotation does mention a caveat to this rule. An abutting landowner may be held liable if the ordinance contains an express provision creating personal liability. Id. at 338.