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Understanding New York Labor Laws

If you've been injured in an accident or on the job, the attorneys of Hach & Rose, LLP have the knowledge, skills, and experience required to hold the party responsible for your injury accountable.

Last Updated: 07-12-2023

New York Construction Accident Attorneys: Understanding New York Labor Laws

Slips and falls on construction sites in New York can cause devastating injuries or even death for construction workers. If they survive the accident, construction workers may be left with lifelong injuries or permanent disabilities that can negatively impact a worker’s ability to work. Whether it be for a few months during recovery, years of rehabilitation, or forced early retirement due to injury, construction site accidents can negatively affect construction workers’ livelihoods and ability to work for the remainder of their lifetimes.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), falls are the leading cause of fatalities in construction site accords, accounting for about one-third of all fatalities in the construction industry.

Some common construction site falls are due to the following:

  • Falls off a ladder
  • Falls after being hit by another object
  • Falls due to unprotected sides, wall openings, and floor holes
  • Improper scaffold construction
  • Protruding and uncapped steel bars or rebar
  • Improper use of ladders, including portable ladders
  • Falls from roofs
  • Falls through roof holes
  • Falls from a crane or other heavy machinery
  • Fall from unstable working surfaces
  • Misuse or failure to use fall protection equipment
  • Slips due to inclement weather, including rain and snow

Even a seemingly minor accident may cause more serious complications down the road, so it is essential for construction workers to seek medical care following the incident to ensure that they do not have more severe unknown or internal injuries. Additionally, when pursuing a legal case against a construction company or other negligent party in the future, it is important to obtain these medical records.

If you or your loved ones have been injured on a construction site in New York due to a fall, even if not from a very significant height, contact the construction accident injury attorneys of Hach & Rose, LLP at (212) 779-0057 to speak with our team about your legal rights and options in this situation.

New York Labor Laws

Construction can be a dangerous line of work in New York, but luckily, several New York Labor Laws are in place to protect construction workers. Through its Labor Laws, New York provides protection to construction workers who are injured while involved in the demolition, repair, alteration, or preparation of commercial buildings in New York and New York City.

New York Laws are on the side of construction workers injured on the job. However, having an experienced New York construction accident victim lawyer is still important to ensure someone is on your side.

New York Labor Law 200

New York Labor Law 200 is also known as Common Law Negligence. New York Labor Law 200 requires construction company owners, contractors, and other parties to exercise precautions to provide a safe working environment for construction workers. The law requires construction company owners, contractors, and other parties to provide reasonable protection for construction workers who operate equipment, devices, and machinery, as well as adequate lighting and safety guardrails to prevent falls. New York Labor Law 200 also covers visitors to construction and job sites.

New York Labor Law 240

One of the most significant labor laws in New York is New York Labor Law 240, also known as the “Scaffold Law,” which provides protection for construction workers who are at risk of falling and sustaining “gravity-related injuries” while performing their work duties on commercial buildings, including apartment buildings. New York Labor Law 240 covers, for instance, if a worker falls from a height or an object falls from a height and strikes a worker, that worker can recover against a third party on or affiliated with the work site.

New York Labor Law 240 provides an additional recovery option for injured workers beyond what they would obtain through workers’ compensation.

It covers repair work, construction, and demolition work on buildings in New York, including:

  • New building construction
  • Repairing
  • Altering
  • Demolition
  • Cleaning
  • Erection of building materials
  • Painting

It protects workers at risk of falling on the job while utilizing ladders, scaffolds, and other support devices that elevate off the ground. The law also covers tools, debris, and other materials that fall off elevated surfaces, such as scaffolds, onto people and other construction workers below. The law covers workers at buildings, as well as subway tunnels, garages, waste towers, bridges, and other structures.

New York Labor Law 240 only pertains to workers engaged in the construction of a building, not to the maintenance of a building, such as a cleaning person. New York Labor Law 240 also does not pertain to inspectors or those involved in salvaging materials from the job site.

New York Labor Law 240 intends to place ultimate responsibility for safety practices at construction sites upon the owners and general contractors instead of the workers not in a position to protect themselves. New York Labor Law 240 requires the responsible parties, such as a company, general contractor, or building owner, to create safe working conditions to prevent falls, such as utilizing scaffolding with safety rails and bearing weight equal to four times or greater than the weight of workers and their necessary materials. New York Labor Law 240 also requires the construction site owner or manager or another negligent party to provide necessary protective equipment and gear, and they must enforce the use of such equipment in a safe manner.

New York Labor Law 240 holds contractors and construction companies liable for injuries and accidents involving falls from ladders, scaffolds, and other heights. The law allows it so that there is no liability on the worker injured or how they might have contributed to an accident. Luckily, this law holds the construction company running the job site liable. However, the question of who is liable for the injury and damages does come into play. If another party is found liable for the accident, blame and liability could be shifted to another party.

When a violation of the law occurs, an injured worker can bring a claim to pursue compensation for their losses. Hach & Rose, LLP recently settled a New York Labor Law 240 case for $1,750,000. In that case, we represented an electrician hoisting a 400 lb. metal box when it fell off the lift, and the box hit him in the head. As a result of this accident, he suffered disabling injuries and had to undergo knee surgery. Due to the protection of New York Labor Law 240, we obtained a court order stating that the defendant was responsible for the accident.

The experienced attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP are dedicated to vigorously protecting the rights and interests of those who have been hurt on construction sites due to the negligence or recklessness of another party. Contact Hach & Rose, LLP at (212) 779-0057 for a free consultation.

New York Labor Law 241

New York Labor Law 241 refers to safety, demolition, and excavation equipment. New York Labor Law 241 requires employers and contractors to provide adequate and reasonable safety precautions for construction workers on job sites. New York Labor Law 241 covers workers injured in other activities on a job site, such as demolition and excavation. Under this law, construction site owners, managers, or other responsible parties on a job site must arrange equipment to provide and promote the maximum safety of workers and visitors.

You May Be Able to Recover Damages for Your Construction Site Fall Accident Through New York Labor Laws

If you or your loved ones have been injured in a fall on a job site in New York or New York City, you may be able to recover damages due to:

  • Diminished quality of life
  • Funeral costs
  • Lost limbs
  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills incurred
  • Pain and suffering
  • Permanent injury or disability
  • Physical therapy or rehabilitation costs
  • Wrongful death

An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you determine if you have a case against a construction company, manager, general contractor, or another negligent party for injuries sustained. Contact a New York construction site accident victim lawyer of Hach & Rose, LLP by calling (212) 779-0057 today if you have any questions or need legal advice. Our lawyers are experienced in understanding the New York Labor Laws in New York and understanding your legal rights after a personal injury.

We have received millions of dollars for clients injured in falls on construction job sites in New York. Our notable awards are related to construction site fall accident cases.

And a final note. You do not have to worry that filing for a claim under any New York Labor Law statute will affect your workers’ compensation benefits. In fact, you are still eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, even if you pursue legal action against the negligent parties that caused you to sustain injuries while performing your work duties.

Construction Accident Results


Settlement for a construction supervisor who fell from a makeshift ladder injuring his back.


Settlement for a carpenter who was injured after falling from a temporary roof.


Settlement for an operating engineer who was injured after he fell through an unsecured wooden platform.


Settlement for a laborer who injured his neck in an accident on a construction site.


Settlement for a school fireman who was injured when he fell from a poorly constructed permanent ladder.


Settlement for an operating engineer who was injured after he fell from a ladder while repairing a garage door.


Settlement for an HVAC worker injured during a fall from a forklift.


Settlement for a construction worker who fell from a ladder positioned on scaffolding.


Settlement for a construction worker who fell from a ladder during a renovation project.


Settlement for a machinist injured at the Stamford, Connecticut Yard Repair Shop.


Settlement for a union electrician who injured his wrist when he fell from his ladder on a construction project.


Settlement for an operating engineer injured at work when he fell from an unsafe ladder.

Contact Us

Our attorneys have been able to successfully obtain personal injury awards worth millions of dollars for other injured New Yorkers who suffered injuries in a construction site fall accidents and may be able to do the same for you when you’ve been injured in a construction site accident. Contact a New York construction site accident attorney of Hach & Rose, LLP, by calling (212) 779-0057 today.