NY App. Div.: Tree Removal In Preparation For Construction Not Covered By Labor Law

In Enos v. Werlatone, the plaintiff was injured when one of the defendants dropped a tree onto his back in the course of removing several trees from a property. The plaintiff alleged that the tree removal was done in preparation for a larger construction project. The court granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss the Labor Law causes of action finding that the plaintiff was not injured during the “erection, demolition, repairing, altering, painting, cleaning or pointing of a building or structure,” as required by section 240 or during “construction, excavation or demolition” work, as required by section 241(6). The court noted that the statutes provide “no protection to a plaintiff injured before any activity listed in the statute was under way”.

Thanks to Cheryl Fuchs for her contribution to this post.

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http://www.courts.state.ny.us/courts/ad2/calendar/webcal/decisions/2009/D25251.pdf