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Labor Law 240 is a win for New Yorkers


If you have a family member who works in construction, you know the lingering dread that today might be the day that he or she suffers an injury on the job. This is especially true for those whose loved one's regularly work with scaffolding.

Among the many things that New Yorker's may take pride in, however, is Labor law 240, which is commonly known as the "scaffold law." The terms of the scaffold law grant special privileges to individuals injured working on or around scaffolding, adding a great deal of responsibility to both the owners of a worksite property and the contractors who oversee a project.

Personal injury claims that invoke the scaffold law often bring home a larger settlement, better compensating the victim for one's losses. However, establishing these cases is complex, and must be undertaken very carefully.

How Labor Law differs from standard worksite regulation

Scaffolds present one of the most common and most dangerous threats in a worksite. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 65 percent of all construction workers interact with scaffolding on a regular basis. Injuries that involve scaffolding are often some of the most fatal or debilitating, because of the possibility that a worker may fall from a great height or that a falling object may strike a worker.

Standard OSHA regulations require that a competent person inspect scaffolding for potential issues before the start of each work shift. OSHA also requires that a competent person inspect any safety equipment, such as harnesses or anchorage points before each work shift.

If the responsible party fails to complete required inspections, or if the worksite continues to use dangerous equipment that does not meet safety standards, a worker who suffers an injury on the worksite may sue for damages easily.

The scaffold law intends to offer extra protection to constructions workers, who face far more danger than many other kinds of workers. Under the scaffold law, the owners of a worksite and contractors who oversee a project face "absolute liability" for injuries where proper safety precautions were not taken.

In these cases, someone who suffers an injury may sue for damages even if the contractor does not employ the individual. Furthermore, some court decisions have gone so far as to find that a worker may successfully seek damages even if he or she contributed to the injury through negligence.

Get the right help to fight for fair treatment

If you or someone you love has suffered an injury involving scaffolding, there may be many paths to fair compensation. Still, justice will not seek you out and knock on your door. When you are ready to build a strong case and fight for fair compensation for your losses, the guidance of an experienced attorney is invaluable. An attorney with experience in building personal injury suits around Labor Law 240 can help you evaluate your situation and ensure that your rights remain protected throughout the process.

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