Every month, a reader asks one of our sponsor legal experts about a work-related issue. These building trades law professionals respond in an Organized Labor exclusive. This month’s expert is Anthony L. Label, Esq. of The Veen Firm.

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I was painting above an interior glass elevator at an office building. My coworker put signs at each elevator stop warning people not to use the elevator. While I was painting the beams over the elevator, an employee of the client threw away the sign at the top floor. Another employee then called the elevator to the top floor and it crushed me against the ceiling. I am permanently disabled from crush injuries and have PTSD. What are my rights?

You have a worker’s compensation case as well as a civil tort case against your client’s company. The worker who removed the sign was negligent, and also broke the law. Labor Code § 6406(a) forbids any person from removing warnings or notices from any place of employment. So your client’s company will be liable for your injuries. However, your employer may also bear some fault, for failing to make sure the elevator was “locked out” or de-energized before you painted above it. If that was your responsibility, or if you knew the elevator was not locked out, you may bear some fault as well. Any fault of your employer and your own fault will reduce your recovery. It is important to speak with a lawyer immediately to fully assess your rights and protect yourself.

-Anthony L. Label, Esq., Trial Team Leader; The Veen Firm, PC, San Francisco, CA

“Interaction via “Ask the Expert” does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Any advice given is neither legal advice nor does it serve as a replacement for hiring an attorney. In addition, any case results mentioned or discussed are not guarantees of similar results.”

Anthony L. Label

This Month's Expert; Anthony L. Label, Esq.

Anthony L. Label is a team leader of the Label trial team at the The Veen Firm, PC, in San Francisco, CA. Mr. Label represents people who have suffered severe personal injuries which have a life-changing, career-changing, life-ending, or career-ending impact. He represents plaintiffs in actions arising from construction site accidents, industrial accidents, dangerous premises, auto accidents, wrongful death, governmental or public entity liability, defective products, and others. In 2013, Mr. Label was invited for membership to the National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Trial Lawyers, and currently holds the record for the largest recovery in the history of the Bar Association of San Francisco’s lawyer referral service program.

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