$2,750,000 Settlement For A Nassau County HVAC Worker Who Fell From A Ladder And Fractured His Right Ankle


Supreme Court, Nassau County


Our client was a 47 year old HVAC worker, who had to access equipment on the roof of the Defendant restaurant in order to repair a unit that was not producing heat. He accessed the roof with an extension ladder. While descending that ladder, it slid out from underneath him, causing him to fall about 13 feet to the ground below. We moved for summary judgment on the issue of liability and won, persuading the court over Defendants' objection that our client was engaged in a covered Labor Law activity and that the Defendant property owners were thus fully responsible for the accident. At the time of settlement, the defense indicated that they planned to appeal that decision.


Our client suffered significant right lower leg fractures, to his tibia and fibula. The fractures required external fixation, followed shortly by an open reduction, internal fixation surgery. The fractures were deemed to be "pilon fractures", meaning that they involved the articular portion of the client's ankle. When the fracture failed to properly heal, a third procedure was performed where healthy bone marrow was injected into the fracture site. At the time of settlement, our client was no longer actively undergoing therapy or other medical treatment. We alleged permanent limitations resulted from this leg injury, including that our client would be unable to return to his prior employment in the construction and HVAC fields.


This case settled approximately one month prior to trial for $2,750,000.


Partners Stephen J. Murphy and David L. Scher.