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New York Partners Obtain Summary Judgment for Construction Client

New York City Partners Evan H. Echenthal and John V. Barbieri recently obtained summary judgment and dismissal of all claims and cross-claims against our client, a construction company owner, in the Supreme Court of New York, Nassau County.

Plaintiff was leaving a residential property where our client had previously performed construction work, when he inadvertently walked into a scaffold that was erected in front of the home. Plaintiff claimed our client failed to install any type of warning of the scaffold. Our client had not performed work at this property for four months prior to the incident, and the Court agreed that the plaintiff failed to see an open and obvious condition.

Plaintiff alleges that he sustained a laceration to his head, head trauma, cervical sprain/strain, headaches, insomnia, anxiety, depression, fear, emotional upset and shock. Plaintiff claims it was necessary that he take medication and undergo testing and treatment for the multitude of injuries he sustained and discomfort. Plaintiff also alleged that he had reduced many of his typical activities due to his suffering, and that he was confined to a bed for approximately one week. Plaintiff’s counsel states that his client’s injuries and/or residuals, except those of a superficial nature, are permanent. Plaintiff’s single evidenced physical injury was a cut to the top of his head, which was treated at medical clinics with instruction to take acetaminophens as needed, and denies any other obvious physical sign of injuries. Plaintiff’s counsel claims the following special damages on behalf of their client: physicians’ expenses, medical supplies and additional expenses.

In opposition to our motion, Plaintiff was not able to state why he failed to see the scaffold. He also could not identify the owner of the scaffold. Our Defense proved that our construction company owner client was not working on this specific site for four months prior to the incident, and previously removed all of their personal equipment from the site at the conclusion of their last visit.

In December 2023, the Supreme Court of New York, Nassau County, granted our summary judgment motion and dismissed Plaintiff’s complaint, holding that Plaintiff failed to see an open and obvious condition, and that Plaintiff was unable to establish that the scaffold in question belonged to our client.

Evan handles cases involving construction liability, premises liability, property damage and personal injury matters. He concentrates his defense practice on labor law, specifically New York Labor Law sections 200, 241(6) and 240.

John has experience in all aspects of construction liability, property damage, personal injury and insurance defense litigation. He handles labor law, premises and products liability, medical and non-medical professional liability, and insurance coverage.