New York's "Scaffold Law", Labor Law §240(1), is a strict(absolute) liability statute created to protect workers in thefield of construction where injuries, or, in some instances, deathoccur while performing one or more tasks that are elevationrelated.

Since its inception, the statute has generated substantial caselaw attempting to interpret and appropriately incorporate itsintended purposes in those matters that come within its ambit.

In my article, Language and the Law (NYLJ, April 7, 2020, p.6, col.4), Istated that "we [attorneys and judges] are often called upon todecipher the 'legislative intent' of a statute." This is especiallyso with respect to Labor Law §240(1). For decades, courts haveoften struggled with its application to the facts of each case,where the injured plaintiffs invariably seek summary judgment onthe issue of liability. As the body of decisional law has shown,there are generally no black and white answers to the issues inquestion leaving the attorneys and the courts to draw conclusionsby sifting through the grey matter with varying results. SeeHeymann, Scaffold Law: A Defining Moment, NYLJ (June 1, 2018, p.4,col.4)

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