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Subcontractors can also be found liable under Labor Law § 240

In Nascimentov v. Bridgehampton Construction Corporation and Bayview Building and Framing Corporation (2011), the plaintiff filed a claim against the defendant, the City of New York (“NY”) under Labor Law § 240 (1), more commonly known as the scaffolding law.

This case was eventually appealed because there were several questions that came up regarding the subcontractor’s liability under the Labor Law. The plaintiff was injured on the job as a construction worker employed as a laborer to the defendant when he fell into the basement while descending a ladder from a platform 14 feet high. To have a case, the injury must fall under the scaffolding law and prove that the injury was caused because the employer-defendant had not set up a safe workplace.

The case is somewhat confusing as Bridgehampton Construction Corporation subcontracted the work to Bayview Building and Framing Corporation who then subcontracted it to R & L Carpentry Corporation who finally subcontracted the work to the defendant, Figueiredo Construction. This is a good example of how difficult it is to understand these types of cases can be and why it is best to discuss these types of situations with an experienced attorney.

As evidenced here, Labor Law § 240 can be very trying for both the plaintiff and defendants. The main issue had to do with whether the Defendant Bayview qualified as an agent of Bridgehampton Construction, and the court reversed the original decision granting of plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment of liability under the scaffolding law.

In the past, “subcontractors have been held to be the statutory agents of general contractors in situations which provisions of the subcontracts explicitly granted supervisory authority.” (Nascimentov v. Bridgehampton). The Supreme Court in New York County granted the worker’s motion for summary judgment against the defendant, Bayview Building and Framing Corporation. In addition, the court denied Bayview’s motion for summary judgment trying to dismiss the Labor Law claims.

If you have been hurt at work, then you may be entitled to benefits including a large cash settlement for you injuries, lost wages, past and future pain and suffering, and medical bills. If you were injured on an elevated surface, such as a scaffolding, then you may be able to sue under New York’s Labor Law. An experienced attorney will know how to handle your particular case. Jayson Lutzky is a New York lawyer with over 32 years of experience. He handles accident and personal injury cases. Mr. Lutzky offers free in-person consultations. He offers home and hospital visits if you have been seriously injured. Call 718-329-9500 to schedule your consultation or visit www.MyNewYorkCityLawyer.com to learn more about Mr. Lutzky.

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