Scaffold Law (Labor Law 240(1)) Held Not Applicable to Lessee Where Window Washer is Injured

In Ferluckaj v. Goldman Sachs & Co., — N.E.2d —-, 2009 WL 856304, 2009 N.Y. Slip Op. 02483(decided April 02, 2009), the Court of Appeals declined to apply the New York Scaffold Law(Labor Law 240(1)) to a worker who was injured while cleaning an interior window as part of the preparation of new office space leased by Goldman Sachs & Co. The worker fell off a desk on which she was standing while cleaning the inside of an office building window.

The Court found that Goldman did not hire plaintiffs employer to clean the window and that Goldman exercised … Read the rest

How Will “Doorbuster Bill” Proposed In Wake of Trampling Death of Wal-Mart Worker Effect Stores’ Civil Liability in the Future?

This past Black Friday bore witness to the inherent dangers in failing to properly control a crowd that could and did turn into a stampeding mob oblivious to the fact that a man was being asphyxiated beneath them. Two days after stampeding shoppers trampled a Wal-Mart worker to death at a Valley Stream, New York store, Queens-based New York City Councilman James Gennaro announced his plans to craft a “Doorbuster Bill” that would require retailers to enact greater security measures during major sales. Nassau County is apparently considering enacting a similar law.

On Black Friday, the now-traditional day after Thanksgiving … Read the rest

Daily Eater of Popcorn Sues Over Butter-Flavor Chemical Diacetyl, Saying “I Inhaled.”

Exposure to the chemical known as diacetyl, which adds the buttery flavor to popcorn, has been tied to hundreds of cases of workers whose lungs have been damaged or destroyed. When it is heated diacetyl becomes a vapor and when it is inhaled over a long period of time, it can cause various problematic symptoms. Exposure to this chemical can cause one to experience difficulty breathing and exhaling, and one’s lungs can become scarred. The severe form of the disease is called “bronchiolitis obliterans,” also known as “popcorn workers’ lung,” which can be lethal.

In fact, in July of 2005, … Read the rest

World Trade Center 9/11 Insurer and Law Firms Sanctioned $1.25 Million

United States District Court Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein (Southern District of New York) has imposed sanctions totalling $1,250,000.00 against Zurich American Insurance Company and two of its law firms for failing to timely produce documents that defeated Zurich’s attempt to avoid liability insurance obligations regarding lawsuits brought by the legal successors of many of those who died and many of those who suffered personal injuries or suffered property damage in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Judge Hellerstein imposed the sanctions pursuant to Rule 11 and Rule 37 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure based upon a thorough analysis … Read the rest