New York State’s “Scaffold Law” states that contractors and property owners must ensure that scaffolds and other platforms for construction and repair are constructed and operated to protect workers. Our client worked as a laborer on a construction project in New York Harbor. In order to reach his work location, he had to walk across wood planks set at different heights above the water on steel pilings. While lowering himself from one plank to another, his glove caught on a piece of metal, leaving him dangling in mid-air and rupturing his bicep.
Based on the Scaffold Law, which protects construction workers who work in elevated work sites, we moved for summary judgment in favor of our client on the issue of liability, which the judge granted. On appeal, the Appellate Division, Second Department upheld the decision in our client’s favor, leaving the only issue in the case the amount of damages. The case later settled on terms favorable to our client.