Charles McGrath (plaintiff) was hired to work at a construction job. The Glenwal Company (defendant) constructed a temporary walkway over a trench. The walkway was made by laying down planks on top of each other. While McGrath was working, one of the planks upended and caused him to fall through the walkway to his death. McGrath’s estate brought suit against Glenwal for negligence, and the jury found in the estate’s favor. Glenwal appealed, and the appellate court affirmed the jury’s verdict. Glenwal then appealed the appellate court’s decision, arguing that because McGrath assumed the risk of his injuries, Glenwal was not negligent.