New York Labor Law 240(1) Example Case

In Abbatiello v. Lancaster Studio Associates, 3 N.Y.3d 46, 814 N.E.2d 784, 781 N.Y.S.2d 477 (2004), the Court found no nexus between the defendant owner and the plaintiff, as the plaintiff's presence on the defendant owner's property was compulsory. There was no affirmative act on behalf of the defendant owner, such as entering into a lease agreement with a tenant, which would compel the plaintiff's presence. As the Court stated: "Common to Celestine, Gordon and Coleman--and to all cases imposing Labor Law 240(1) liability on an out-of-possession owner--is some nexus between the owner and the worker, whether by a lease agreement or grant of an easement, or other property interest. Here, however, no such nexus exists. The injured plaintiff was on the owner's premises not by reason of any action of the owner but by reason of provisions of the Public Service Law."