Case Notes in

Labor Law

First published: Nov 2023
The Fallout From a Ladder Fall

TAKEAWAY There is little to be done about a law that finds you liable though you did nothing wrong. New York’s Labor Law can seem cruel at times. There is a very important lesson here, however, and that is before a board allows a renovation, the shareholder must sign an alteration agreement. This is critically important. Not only will it set forth the rules for a renovation (which if broken, the board can ask a court to suspend the work), but it will also require a shareholder to indemnify the cooperative (or condominium) in the event the renovation causes a problem, whether it occurs during the renovation (such as drilling into a gas pipe) or after (a leak results years later from defective plumbing). Alteration agreements must be reviewed, updated, signed and kept in a safe place for future reference. A board might consider an extra copy to be placed either in a safe place (i.e. a board room), with their lawyer or some other alternate location. That’s how important an alteration agreement can be.

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