The Evolution And Limits Of NY's Recalcitrant Worker Defense

Law360 (June 3, 2019, 3:19 PM EDT) -- Defending New York Labor Law Section 240(1) cases requires a showing that Section 240(1) does not apply because the plaintiff worker and/or the work that he was performing are not protected under the statute or that the defendant was in compliance with the mandates of Section 240(1). In theory, there is a defense premised under the “recalcitrant worker” doctrine, but it has become more and more difficult for defendants to meet its growing requirements.

The recalcitrant worker defense is intended to shield owners and general contractors from liability under Section 240(1) when accidents are caused solely by a worker’s failure to...

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