Painter Settles for $4 Million after Workplace Injury

By Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo & Plotkin LLP

Plaintiff was working at a site on Tanger Mall Drive in Riverhead when he fell off a display case while attempting to paint a ceiling. During the fall Plaintiff crashed through a piece of plasterboard before finally slamming into the floor.

Plaintiff suffered a pilon fracture of the ankle necessitating surgery with four stabilizing screws. The fall also caused ruptured and herniated discs. Plaintiff underwent surgery to address his back issues as well as physical therapy.

Plaintiff Painter claimed he was not given the proper safety equipment necessary to carry out his work. Also a lift was provided at the site, he claimed it was unusable because of the hanging light hanging light fixtures. Defendants contended that the lift provided adequate access to all areas of the ceiling and that the Painter’s supervisor told him to stop working from the top of the display case but that Plaintiff Painter ignored him.

The judge granted a motion for summary judgment on liability, finding the Defendants violated sections of the Labor law. The parties then settled on damages. Five insurance companies agreed to contribute to the settlement including, Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. as well as Zurich North America for Banana Republic, Gap.

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