In Caballero v. Benjamin, the Appellate Division, Second Department held that the plaintiff injured worker established prima facie that the owner and general contractor were liable under Labor Law sec. 240(1). A wheel on the scaffold upon which the plaintiff was working fell into a hole, causing him to fall. The Court reasoned that the violation of sec. 240 was the proximate cause of the accident and, therefore, the plaintiff's conduct (not discussed in the decision) could not be the sole proximate cause.
The Court also held that the subcontractor was not liable under sec. 240(1) because the evidence established that the subcontractor did not have supervisory control over the work or did not have the authority to insist that proper safety measure were followed.
Also, the Court held that the owner and general contractor established their entitlement to judgment as a matter of law on their contractual indemnification claim against the subcontractor. The noted that, "[a]though 'an indemnification agreement that purports to indemnify a party for its own negligence is void under General Oblications Law sec. 5-322.1, such an agreement does not violate the General Obligations Law if it authorizes indemnification to the fullest extent permitted by law."