Kenneth Halperin and Mitchell Kahn, partners at Wingate Russotti Shapiro & Halperin, LLP, obtained a $2,250,000 settlement plus a reduction of a workers’ compensation lien for a 44-year-old Bronx Excavators Union Local 731 laborer, who was injured while working at a construction site.
At the time of the accident, our client was shoveling concrete when he was struck on the right side of his body by the bucket of the excavator, causing him to fall to the ground. The defendants tried to argue that the plaintiff was part of the excavating crew, and should have been aware of the operation of the excavator near where he was shoveling. Ken and Mitch were able to establish that the plaintiff’s work was independent of whatever excavating work was taking place and that the excavator should not have been operated anywhere near the plaintiff.
As a result of the accident, the plaintiff sustained a tear of his posterior lateral meniscus of the right knee, a tear of the labrum and the rotator cuff of the left shoulder, and herniated discs at C4-5, C5-6, and C6-7. The plaintiff required arthroscopic surgery to the right knee, arthroscopic surgery to the left shoulder, a revision surgery to the right knee (dealing with a recurrent tear of the anterior horn of medial and later meniscus), and cervical disc replacement surgery at C5-6.
Ken and Mitch also offered evidence that the plaintiff will require a partial knee replacement at some point in the future. Additionally, they argued that the plaintiff would never be able to return to work as a union laborer due to the injuries sustained.
During depositions, Mitch and Ken established that that the defendants had violated Labor Law Section 241 (6) since the excavator should not have been operated anywhere near other workers on site.
The case was resolved at mediation for $2,250,000, plus a reduction of plaintiff’s workers’ compensation lien.