Property owners and contractors must provide scaffolding and other safety measures to protect workers and visitors, including scaffolding, hoists, ladders, slings, hangers, pulleys, and ropes. If you’re naming some of the most dangerous areas of work, then construction work is usually near the top of the list. While New York Labor Law 200 and 241 allow for a broader legal interpretation when filing a personal injury claim, courts require a stricter interpretation of Labor Law 240. NYC’s Scaffold Safety Law ensures that contractors must provide their workers with proper safety equipment while doing work at high elevations. If you or someone you love were injured in a scaffolding-related accident, you deserve justice for the pain and suffering from your injury. New York, NY 10006, Phone: 212-571-7100 To join NYCOSH in … The crisis is caused by the so-called “Scaffold Law,” an archaic construction liability law that only exists in New York. If you file legal action under New York State Sections 200, 240, or 241 this won’t affect your eligibility to file for workers’ compensation. New York City Building Code The Building Code sets forth standards and specifications for the installation of supported, outrigger and suspended scaffolds. Although, the history of these laws can be traced back to the 1885 Scaffold Law, they have gone through various amendments, or versions over the past hundred years, which has expanded its scope beyond work performed on scaffolds. Scaffold Law Updates National Association Of Minority Contractors, NY Tri-State Chapter Calls On Gov. This legal requirement mandates construction owners and contractors to provide scaffolding and other safety measures to protect workers. What Medical Questions can an Employer ask During Covid-19? To learn more call 212-571-7100 today for a free consultation.”, Sources:https://www.bls.gov/regions/new-york-new-jersey/news-release/fatalworkinjuries_newyorkcity.htmhttps://www.osha.gov/oshstats/commonstats.html. The NY scaffolding law provides some of the most important liability protections for construction workers. According to New York Labor Law’s Section 240, owners and contractors are required “to give proper protection to a person so employed” when their work contributes to the “erection, demolition, repairing, altering, painting, cleaning or pointing of a building or structure.” Some of the provisions established by the law to protect workers include: The Scaffold Law is a proven disincentive to investing in construction site safety. Dismantle this law: New York’s Scaffold Law diminishes affordable housing supply by driving up the cost of construction NY Daily News | 26d You’ve heard the warnings from voices throughout the city, including on these pages: With the COVID pandemic having throttled entire industries and devastated incomes, millions of New Yorkers are way behind on their rents. Many types of employees and independent contractors deal with scaffolds daily in their work, including window washers, painters, welders, carpenters, bricklayers, electricians, to name just a few. These scaffold workers risk serious injury or even death every day at their jobs. New York’s Scaffold Law is the only law of this kind in the country that holds construction site owners and general contractors absolutely liable for scaffold accidents which result in injuries to construction workers. 250 Park Avenue, 7th Floor These statistics are discouraging, especially when you consider The New York City Buildings Department reports there have been 287 construction-related injuries and five fatalities in the five boroughs during the first six months of 2019. And so we reintroduce you to one giant, concrete obstacle: New York’s Scaffold Law. It’s important to know the defendant (owner, contractor, or another party) is likely to aggressively fight back against any claims filed against them under the Scaffold Law or Sections 200 and 241. The scaffolding must be able to hold 4x its maximum weight. © O'Dwyer & Bernstien, LLP. This legal provision also mandates owners and contractors will arrange equipment in such a way to maximize the safety of construction workers and any visitors to the job site. NY Scaffold Law (Labor Law 200, 240, 241), By submitting this form I agree with the Terms & Conditions, Most Common Fatal Construction Accidents in New York City. If officials discover a dangerous situation, notice is placed to warn all workers and visitors of the danger. Co-Managing Partner and Chair of O'Dwyer & Bernstien's Labor & Employee Benefits practice, Jason has over twenty years of experience in the New York legal industry. These conditions are the most dangerous in construction work. Cuomo To Fix Costly Scaffold Law December 7, 2020 Dismantle This Law: New York’s Scaffold Law Diminishes Affordable Housing Supply by Driving up the Cost of Construction This means that when the owner/contractor doesn’t give the worker all the necessary safety equipment that they’re entitled to and the worker gets injured as a result, then their employer is held completely responsible. New York Labor Law 240 Nicknamed the Scaffolding Law, Section 240 protects the rights of workers injured in a fall or due to a falling object striking them. The Scaffold Law has been an effective protection for workers for over 130 years and should remain so in New York State. Sections 200 and 241 outline a general overview of what’s covered which means there is room for legal interpretation. Caught-in/Between (caught or crushed by equipment, structures, or materials) 5.1%, Erections of safety measures including blocks, braces, hoists, ladders, pulleys, or related types of equipment. Detailed safety requirements pertaining to scaffold maintenance, inspections and worker precautions and protection are also outlined in this Code. What Does the Scaffolding Law Say? Even when acting with extreme caution and using appropriate safety measures, there’s always potential for an accident that can cause injuries or even fatalities. This law is unique to New York … Reasonable steps include scaffolding, hoists, ladders, slings, hangers, … However, the definition of a building is broad because it includes other types of structures, such as bridges, boats, subway tunnels, and garages. New York Scaffold Law – Strict Liability of Owners and Contractors for Non-Compliance. In 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported 20 workers died in New York City from construction-related accidents. New York Labor Law 200 protects the rights of both workers and any visitors to the job site. In this case, the worker needs to be engaged in work that was in “furtherance of a project” that is one of the activities covered by the statute. For instance, under Section 240, a worker must have been working on a structure that is legally defined as a building. Expand sections by using the arrow icons. Erecting buildings and erections of safety measures (braces, hoists, ladders, and pulleys). Specifically, in New York there is New York Labor Law 200, which includes the “Scaffold Law.” Section 240 of the New York State Labor Law (also known as The Scaffold Law) applies to construction workers who have experienced a fall or have been hit by a falling object. 250 Park Avenue, 7th Floor Section 240 of New York State Labor Law, the “Scaffolding Law”, protects the rights of construction workers who suffer a fall or are struck by a falling object. Dating back to 1885, the law holds building owners and developers 100% liable for … Fill out the form below and we will get back to you as soon as possible to discuss your legal options. New York, NY, 10177, © document.write(new Date().getFullYear()) MOWK Law | Phone: 212.920.6695 | Fax: 917.382.3934 It was enacted into law in 1885 and predates more than 135 years of laws and protections which ensure worker safety on construction sites. In the event an accident has occurred, an attorney can examine the situation and determine if the injury is covered under Section 240. Pedestrians, motorists, or other passersby to a worksite are also not covered under Section 240. New York State designates laws to provide specific protection to workers who are injured on construction worksites. Section 241 specifically refers to construction situations involving demolition, excavation, and safety equipment. The New York State legislature probably realized that it could not repeal Newton’s law, but it did enact the “Scaffold Law” (New York State Labor Law §240) to protect workers against the dangers of gravity while they are on the job. The reasoning for this is because Section 240 allows for injured parties to recover more than they would be allowed to under common law or workers’ compensation. It’s important to understand the differences in these three sections of the New York State Labor Law. It is structured to ensure construction company owners and contractors take reasonable steps to give workers a safe working environment. These laws provide protection for injuries or fatalities occurring at commercial worksites which includes: preparation, demolition, repairs, or alterations. The Department of Labor ; Article 3. New York long ago adopted a scaffolding law design to protect construction workers and others from certain unsafe work conditions, including those associated with scaffolding and construction. Section 240 of New York State Labor Law, the “Scaffolding Law”, protects the rights of construction workers who suffer a fall or are struck by a falling object. Specifically, this law imposes absolute liability. The law makes an exception for residential property owners who “contract for but do not direct or control the work.” In 1993, the New York Court of Appeals held in Fortunately, New York construction workers, including independent contractors, have strong legal protection to recoup for their injuries. Essentially, the law holds that general contractors and property owners are 100% liable for any gravity-related (falling) accident in which they are at least somewhat at fault. According to this section of New York State Labor Law, it is the general duty of owners and contractors to make certain all equipment, machinery, and devices are positioned, operated, and guarded in a secure manner. New Scaffold Law SCAFFOLD INJURIES, ACCIDENTS & DEATH. In the NY Business Journal, a study cited that 90 percent of fatalities that occur at work in NY over the past decade involved employers who were in violation of existing safety standards. Owners of larger residential or commercial buildings are automatically liable if an accident occurs under Section 240. Scaffold or staging more than twenty feet from the ground or floor, swung or suspended from an overhead support or erected with stationary supports, except Scaffold wholly within the interior of a building and covering the entire floor space of any room therein, shall have a safety rail of suitable material properly attached, bolted, braced or otherwise secured, rising at least thirty-four inches above … Fortunately, there are laws in place that help to protect construction workers and give them certain rights. This includes: The law is also very explicit in that it relates only to construction, and excludes activities related to maintenance, manufacturing, or decorative work on a structure. New York Labor Law Sections 240 and 241, the “Scaffolding Law” protects the rights of construction workers or visitors who suffer a fall or are struck by a falling object. Some of the specific provisions that the owners must comply with that are intended to protect workers include the following: The unique feature of “absolute liability” that the statute places on site owners and contractors who break the law makes Section 240 controversial. Fax: 212-863-9230. Under the current law, no amount of safety equipment, training, or workplace controls will … What Is The Average Car Accident Settlement In New York? Use this page to navigate to all sections within Labor Law. Located in Lower Manhattan, NY, the attorneys at O’Dwyer & Bernstien, LLP provide legal representation in the fields of personal injury, construction injury, labor and employment, and real estate law. Search New York Codes. Search by Keyword or Citation; Search by Keyword or Citation. Cancel. Unfortunately, construction accidents happen more often than we’d like to hear about. New York State Labor Law sections 240/241, known as the Scaffold Law, holds contractors and property owners engaged in construction, repair or demolition work 100% liable for gravity-related injuries despite any gross negligence on the part of injured workers, such as failure to use proper safety equipment, Insurance Journal has reported. New York Labor Law 240. The work must take place on a structure, legally defined as a building but can also include boats, bridges, garages, subway tunnels, and water towers. It is applied directly to the owner or his or her agent in the incident. A scaffolding which is positioned 20 feet or more above the ground or the floor must be equipped with a safety railing that rises a minimum of 34 inches, which is nearly 3 feet; The railing must be securely fastened to the scaffold to prevent swaying; The safety rail must enclose the full-length and both ends of the scaffold; and. New York’s Scaffold Law is the only law of this kind in the country that holds construction site owners and general contractors absolutely liable for scaffold accidents which result in injuries to construction workers.