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General contractor not liable for fatal fall from unprotected scaffolding

Amy Felty sued Skanska USA Building, Inc., after her husband suffered a fatal fall while working on the facade of the University of Michigan Museum of Art.  Felty worked for a subcontractor of Skanska. His employer had failed to erect a guardrail on the scaffolding, and Felty argued that as the general contractor, Skanska owed a duty to all workers on the "common work site" to enforce safety precautions.

The Court of Appeals affirmed the lower court's decision that Skanska was not responsible for the fall.  The Court held that since the scaffolding from which Felty fell presented a danger only to Felty and one other co-employee of the subcontractor, the claim did not meet the parameters necessary to hold the general contractor responsible.
Thompson O’Neil, P.C.
309 East Front Street
Traverse City, Michigan 49684
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