New York City, New York (NewYorkInjuryNews.com) — Many people think that when a worker gets hurt on a construction job that compensation for their injuries is restricted to workers’ compensation benefits. Given the limited funds available through workers compensation, it is fortunate that this is not always the case in New York State. When representing injured workers, Sullivan Papain Block McGrath & Cannavo P.C. (“Sullivan Papain”) does not conclude a case simply because a client receives workers compensation; instead, Sullivan Papain goes to work to find a responsible party that may be sued directly, ensuring maximum recovery.
New York law recognizes that construction work, as well as painting structures or cleaning windows from various heights, can be very dangerous. Our government has passed what are known as “Labor Laws” to protect workers by making property owners and general contractors responsible for providing proper equipment and safety devices. These laws are designed to protect workers from such things as falls from scaffolds and ladders, building collapses, falling objects, and other worksite hazards. Both the owner and the general contractor may be responsible for violations of these laws even if another contractor, such as the worker’s employer, was negligent.
Thus, in certain cases, you can recover both benefits from your employer’s worker’s compensation insurance company and you can sue, for money damages, the property owner and other contractors who violated the law.
For example, if the owner of an apartment building hires a company to paint the building, the owner is responsible for providing the painters with the proper equipment they need to safely perform the work. If a painter then falls from a scaffold or ladder because it was in an unsafe condition, the owner is liable for any injuries the worker suffers even if it was the employer’s scaffold and it was the employer who erected the scaffold. Why? Because the law demands that in such instances the owner take responsibility for providing the workers on its property with the protection they need and deserve. As a result, the injured worker would be entitled to both collect benefits from the worker’s compensation company and sue the building owner for money damages.
Sullivan Papain applies New York’s Labor Law to the benefit of many clients. Among many other settlements, we recovered $4.5 Million for a 24-year-old construction worker injured in a scaffolding collapse. We recovered $3.75 Million for a bridge painter who suffered serious fractures when a man-lift toppled over. We now represent multiple victims of the March 2008 crane collapse, including the families of deceased construction workers. We are prosecuting two wrongful death actions arising from falls at building sites, including one worker who was literally blown off of a rooftop in February 2008.
New York’s Labor Laws are very technical and complex and that is why you should make sure that if you or a family member is hurt or killed while performing construction, painting or window cleaning work, that you retain a lawyer experienced in this area of the law.
Every case has time limitations in which a lawsuit must be started or you will be forever prevented from bringing one. So if you think you have a case, you should consult with a lawyer right away to protect your rights.
This information brought to you by Nicholas Papain, New York Personal Injury, Trial Law Attorney, Sullivan Papain Block McGrath & Cannavo P.C.