Why Even Small Details Can Make a Big Difference in the Outcome of Your New York Construction Injury Case

In many types of injury accident cases, small details can matter a great deal. That can be true in construction accidents, as well. Due to the details contained in the New York statutes that allow you to recover compensation for your construction injuries, the nuances between a temporary staircase and a permanent staircase can be the difference between a successful outcome and a defeat in your case. To make sure that all your details, both great and small, are properly addressed, be sure you have knowledgeable New York City construction injury counsel in your corner.

One recent case from Niagara County is an example of the importance of details. G. was a construction worker who was hurt going down a set of stairs leading to the basement of a house that was under construction. The staircase collapsed beneath him, causing his injuries. The worker sued several entities for the harm he suffered, alleging that the entities he sued did not provide him with properly safe working conditions and, in the process, violated Sections 240(1) and 241(6) of the New York Labor Law.

In a case like Gary’s, details matter. Gary was hurt descending a staircase. Specifically, it matters whether or not the staircase was a temporary or permanent feature of the house. A temporary staircase, under New York law, is the functional equivalent of a ladder. So, if you fall and suffer injuries while using a temporary staircase, you may be entitled to receive compensation under a Section 240(1) claim, just the same as a worker who falls and suffers injuries while using a ladder.

In this lawsuit, G. had enough evidence that the staircase was temporary to justify proceeding with his Section 240(1) claim.

Chronology and timing details can also be very important in your construction injury case. The law says that owners of the property under construction, as well as general contractors, have a legal obligation to ensure safe working conditions for all workers on the site. In addition, any person or entity who “had the power to enforce safety standards and choose responsible subcontractors” or any person or entity who “had the ability to control the activity which brought about the injury” also can be liable.

Subcontractors themselves can be liable if they had the necessary degree of authority “to supervise or control the work site.” A subcontractor that has already completed its work clearly would no longer have the required authority and would not be liable. In G.’s case, this issue of timing meant that he was allowed to pursue his case against one of the two defendants. He had enough evidence to go forward against the home builder based upon his argument that the staircase upon which he fell was a temporary structure. The carpentry subcontractor he sued had completed its work, though, and no longer had the required control.

Importantly, though, the outcome allowed G. to continue onward with his case and his pursuit of compensation for his injuries.

If you have been hurt working at your construction job, talk to the skilled New York City construction injury attorneys at Arcia & Associates. Our team has many years of experience helping injured workers by providing them with the effective and thoughtful representation that their cases need.

Contact us at 718-424-2222 to find out how we can help you.

More Blog Posts:

Proof of a Lack of Fall Protection Allows an Injured Demolition Man to Win His New York Construction Injury Case, Blog de Abogado en la Ciudad de Nueva York, 9 de Julio de 2018

A Brooklyn Elevator Mechanic’s Successful Appeal in His Construction Injury Lawsuit, Blog de Abogado en la Ciudad de Nueva York, 24 de Mayo de 2018


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