Construction Injuries

Selecting the Right Defendant(s) to Sue in Your New York Trip-and-Fall Construction Accident Case

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    extension-cordIf you are hurt on the job while working in construction, the law may give you various options to pursue the compensation you deserve. One essential component of a construction accident case is determining which people or entities you should sue. Choosing the right defendant(s) can be a huge factor in achieving a truly successful outcome, and it is just one of many ways that your New York construction accident attorney can help you. For one subcontractor’s employee, her construction injury case involved suing the project’s prime contractor and overcoming that contractor’s claim that the law made it immune from being sued.

    Tammy was an employee working for a company that was subcontracted to do work on the renovated heating systems of three buildings owned by a school district just outside Albany. As part of her job, Tammy was carrying conduit pipes when she tripped and fell after her foot got caught on two extension cords lying across an area of floor.

    Tammy sued the prime contractor on the job, alleging that her trip and fall was a result of a violation of Section 241(6) of the New York Labor Law, and the prime contractor was liable for her injuries.

    This section of the law requires  “reasonable and adequate protection and safety” for construction sites. Under this law, a worker can be entitled to recover for her injuries if her accident was a result of a failure to comply with the applicable state regulations, contained in the New York State Industrial Code.  One of the rules states:  “parts of floors, platforms and similar areas where persons work or pass shall be kept free from accumulations of dirt and debris and from scattered tools and materials.”

    Here, the worker’s evidence was that the floor was not kept clear, since two extension cords were left out and eventually caused her to trip and fall. The worker offered this evidence to show that the floor was not in compliance with the Industrial Code and that she was entitled to damages under the Labor Law.

    One of the keys to any successful construction injury lawsuit is suing the right people and entities. The prime contractor in this case attempted to avoid liability by arguing that it did not have the practical authority to control or supervise that part of the work site where plaintiff’s accident occurred.

    The New York courts did not agree. The prime contractor could potentially be liable, and the worker was allowed to continue pursuing her case against it.   In this worker’s case, she had proof that the school district hired the defendant as the sole mechanical contractor for the entire project, which proved that the school district was delegating to the prime contractor all supervisory duties over all of the subcontractors, including the plaintiff’s employer. This meant that the prime contractor had control over the work and could be held liable.

    There are many choices, options, and decisions that go into putting together a construction injury case. Each decision has the potential to enhance or to diminish your chances of a successful outcome and is a major reason why experienced counsel is so important. The New York City construction accident attorneys at the law offices of Jacob Oresky have worked tirelessly on behalf of workers injured throughout the New York metro area, including in Westchester County and on Long Island. Find out how we can put our abilities and resources to work to help you pursue the recovery you need.

    For a free case evaluation, contact us online or call our office at 718-993-9999. Our phones are answered 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

    More Blog Posts:

    How Improperly Maintained Equipment Can Harm You And Be The Crux of Your New York Construction Injury Lawsuit, New York Accident Lawyer Blog, Aug. 3, 2017

    Will Your Immigration Status and Use of an Alias Prevent You From Pursuing a Construction Accident Case? New York Courts Say ‘No’, New York Accident Lawyer Blog, June 8, 2017

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