Serious construction accidents can happen on any type and size of construction site from small jobsites, such as a private residence, to large commercial buildings and complexes. Construction accident cases are very complicated and can involve multiple responsible parties, insurance companies, and worker’s compensation claims. Negligence of some sort is usually the underlying cause of construction accidents. Injuries can range in severity from minor to deadly, and many workers are never able to return to their professions. At the very least injured construction workers face high medical bills and lost wages.
Construction accident causes
- Common causes of construction accidents include:
- Defective heavy equipment
- Defective tools
- Defective or improperly assembled scaffolding
- Messy jobsite
- Falling materials or structures
- Employer negligence
- Failure to adhere to OSHA safety standards
- Negligence or inappropriate behavior of other workers
- Inappropriate behavior of visitors to the site
Protecting your legal rights
The actions you take immediately following a construction accident can make all the difference when seeking compensation for medical bills and lost wages. After an accident you should take the following steps as soon as you possibly can:
- Notify your employer of the accident in writing and keep a copy or the report. If written notification is not feasible, write down the name and position of the person you notified, everything that was said when you reported the accident, and everything you remember about the accident.
- Fill out a worker’s compensation claim form and keep a copy. Your employer must provide you with the form as soon as he or she is informed of the accident.
- Write down the names and contact information of all potential witnesses.
- Take pictures of the scene of the accident and any injuries you have sustained.
- Seek medical attention even if your injuries seem minor.
- Contact an experienced construction accident attorney.
- File a worker’s compensation claim.
If you are injured in a construction accident you should always file a worker’s compensation claim even if you do not intend to sue. A worker’s compensation claim is not a lawsuit against you employer, and it is not welfare. It is an insurance claim. All employers are required to carry worker’s compensation insurance. Benefits which you may receive include:
- Temporary disability
- Current and future medical bills
- Vocational rehabilitation
- Permanent disability
Construction Accident Lawsuits
In some cases you will want to file a lawsuit in addition to a worker’s compensation claim. Construction accident lawsuits are very complex. The nature of the construction site, cause of the accident, and your relationship to the other parties involved will all be critical factors in your case. One of the most important aspects of a construction accident lawsuit is determining who is responsible for the accident. This one aspect can be very complicated in itself. There can be multiple responsible parties including:
- Construction site owners
- General contractors
- Prime contractors
- Equipment manufacturers
Injuries caused by construction accidents can mean short-term loss of wages, permanent disability preventing you from returning to work, or they can even result in death. Most involve high medical bills. After a work-related injury getting the compensation that you deserve can be crucial to your physical recovery and to providing for your family.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a construction accident,contact an experienced personal injury attorney today.