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$________ Construction site negligence - Plaintiff self-employed flooring subcontractor falls from ladder - Comminuted tibia and fibula fractures - Complications include DVT and osteomyelitis - Limited income claims.

Passaic County, NJ

The plaintiff subcontractor in his early 40s, who was working on a single family addition, contended that the ladder he used, which was left in the work area in the interior of house, and which he was told by the general contractor that he could use when the G.C. let him into the premises, was half of the extension ladder that was owned by the defendant homeowner, who had previously been actively engaged in much of the work. The plaintiff maintained that the ladder was highly dangerous and did not contain safety features such as anchor feet. The plaintiff contended that he as he was standing upon the ladder, observing the work he would later do on the second floor area of the addition, the ladder tilted to the left, and he fell to the floor below.

The plaintiff named the homeowner, whom he contended was negligent in removing the contractor’s ladder and substituting it with one of his own, which he found easier to use as he assisted in much of the construction work. The plaintiff further maintained that that this activity elevated the homeowners to the status of co-general contractors, with equal responsibility for site safety.

The plaintiff also maintained that the contractor, who let him in the home when he arrived for work advising him that the ladder was on the side of the house, negligently failed to make reasonable inspections and to provide a safe work site. The general contractor’s deposition reflected that he had advised the homeowner on a number of occasions that the ladder was dangerous and should be removed from the work site. The defendants contended that that plaintiff’s own negligence contributed to the accident, particularly since he had several employees present on site, and yet never requested any assistance with the ladder before he began to use it.

The plaintiff contended that he sustained left tibial and fibular comminuted fractures and required a number of surgeries. The plaintiff maintained that the complications included persistent cellulitis, DVT and osteomyelitis, contending that he will permanently be at risk for flare-ups. The plaintiff contended that he will permanently suffer pain, difficulties with ambulation and circulatory compromises. The plaintiff’s proofs supported only a very limited income claim.

The case settled prior to trial for $________, including $________ from the defendant general contractor and $________ from the homeowner.

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