New York City (NYC) Construction Injury Lawyer
Accidents on construction sites can affect many different types of workers, from masons and carpenters to electricians and welders. Anyone working on a construction site is at risk, and employers and construction companies have a duty to try to make the environment safe.
When accidents happen and construction workers are injured, our lawyers step in and fight to get them the help they deserve. Our attorneys may be able to take your case and represent you in your injury claim, working to get you the compensation you need from your employer and other at-fault parties. Depending on the situation, you may be able to file a third-party lawsuit against a negligent product manufacturer or other party. In such situations, you will have three years to sue in New York City. When construction accident claims are successful, victims can recover compensation for all of their losses, including economic and non-economic damages.
To set up a free case review from our New York City construction injury lawyers, call The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083.
Common Construction Accidents in New York City (NYC)
There are many ways that someone can be injured on a construction site. Generally speaking, there are plenty of safety precautions used on construction sites, such as hard hats and steel-toed boots. However, many accidents, including those that involve falls, electrocution, and defective tools or machinery, are unfortunately common at construction sites in New York City.
Falling off a ladder or scaffolding could lead to serious injuries. Even if the distance you fell was not too far, falling into dangerous materials or tools could be catastrophic and lead to loss of limb, head injuries, or back injuries.
This could also potentially include injuries from slip and falls caused by wet or icy work conditions or spilled materials and chemicals. Proper drainage is important on a construction site to prevent such issues.
According to data compiled by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, over one-third of all deaths in the construction industry in 2021 were due to falls, slips, and trips. Falls involving construction workers might also injure passersby. In a similar vein, the dropping of construction equipment could injure pedestrians walking by a construction site in New York City. The risk of this is greater in metropolitan areas because of the high concentration of construction areas mixed with pedestrians, bicyclists, and other passersby.
If an electrician or other worker fails to notify construction workers that the power was turned back on, they could be seriously injured. Talk to our construction accident lawyers about whether you can sue an electrician or the construction firm you worked for if you were injured in an accident like this.
Electrocution accidents can cause burns, cardiovascular issues, respiratory issues, central nervous system issues, and musculoskeletal issues. The severity of injuries caused by electrocution accidents can vary and may depend on the amount of electrical current a victim was exposed to and the amount of time they were exposed.
From backhoes and bulldozers to dump trucks and pickups, there are many vehicles on a construction site. Drivers, passengers, and workers on foot on the site might be injured by a dangerous driver or the dangerous cargo they may be transporting.
Getting injured in vehicle accidents is especially common for roadside work crews. These accidents might be primarily caused by the driver that crashed into your crew, but an employer who failed to put up protective barriers might also share responsibility.
Being injured in a vehicle accident while working on a construction site can present interesting issues for victims in New York. If the negligent party is the driver, not anyone related to your place of employment, you may have to file a claim with your personal injury protection insurance. However, if your injuries are severe enough, you will be permitted to sue the negligent driver for compensation in New York City.
Defective Tools and Machinery
If any of those backhoes or bulldozers – or even something like a miter saw or nail gun – were to malfunction, serious injuries could result. These injuries might involve the user as well as other workers in their vicinity. In these situations, either the employer or the product manufacturer could be liable. If the manufacturer distributed a defective product that caused you injury on a construction site, you will likely be able to file a third-party lawsuit for compensation.
Lifting and Carrying Injuries
Pre-existing back issues could be made worse during an acute back injury while lifting or carrying items around a construction site in New York City. It is important for workers to always lift with the proper technique and for construction sites to always have enough workers to make lifting and carrying building materials and other items a safe operation. Lifting and carrying injuries might cause damage to the neck, back, or knees, among other areas of the body.
What Kinds of Injuries Can Occur on New York City (NYC) Construction Sites?
Construction sites contain many hazards and dangerous conditions that could harm workers who are careless. In some cases, even the most prudent and safety-conscious worker could suffer an injury. While construction workers suffer a wide variety of injuries, there are some common ones our lawyers often see.
Construction workers are likely to suffer cuts and bruises throughout the course of a day. They work with tools and materials that could easily cause an injury. While many cuts are minor inconveniences, some are deep lacerations that could result in muscle damage or infection.
Burns are common on construction sites. Workers might be burned in explosions, by burst pipes spraying hot water or steam, by hazardous chemicals, or because of exposed electrical wires.
Even when wearing hard hats and other safety equipment, construction workers often sustain traumatic head injuries. These types of injures could result from falling objects and heavy equipment. Common head injuries sustained in construction accidents might range from minor concussions or traumatic brain injuries. Head injuries should always be taken seriously and require immediate medical treatment.
Construction sites are filled with large equipment and building material. A misstep or miscalculation could find an unexpected worker crushed between two heavy objects. Such accidents and injuries might occur when one worker fails to check for others nearby.
The type of injury will often influence what actions you should take afterward. For example, after investigating an accident, our lawyers might determine that multiple parties could be held responsible. If multiple parties share fault for your injuries, multiple parties can be sued and made to compensate you for your damages.
Getting Compensation for Construction Accident Injuries in NYC
The aftermath of a construction accident is often difficult to navigate. In some cases, the law might prevent you from suing your employer because of Workers’ Compensation laws. However, there are exceptions to these rules that allow injured workers to file lawsuits under certain circumstances. Our construction injury lawyers can offer the help you need and work to get your injuries compensated.
In most cases where someone is injured at a job in New York City, Workers’ Compensation is supposed to be the main way they get coverage. However, workplace liability insurance does not always cover injuries at their full value. You may be entitled to additional damages if your attorney can find a reason to file a lawsuit instead.
Most construction workers and contractors are entitled to workplace liability insurance coverage that can help them get medical bills and lost wages covered regardless of who was at fault. But you may be able to sue for injuries instead, potentially opening up additional damages, if your injury involved scaffolding, your injury involved falling from heights, your injury involved something being dropped on you, your injury was caused by a third party, or your injury involved other specific safety violations.
In any of these situations, you could be entitled to take the at-fault parties to court – whether that is your employer or someone else – and sue them for damages.
Negligence and Construction Accident Injury Cases in New York City
To get compensation for an accident on a construction site, you need to prove that someone caused the accident either intentionally or through negligence. Intentionally rigged accidents are rare, but victims of workplace violence commonly sue employers and co-workers for assault and battery at work on a construction site. Otherwise, when injuries happen by accident, you can sue on the grounds that the at-fault party was “negligent.”
Negligence is a legal principle made up of four main elements: a legal duty, a breach of duty, causation, and damages. Employers owe their workers a duty to provide a safe work environment, proper safety gear, proper safety training, and other reasonable safety precautions to avoid injury. Whenever anyone breaches the legal duty that they owe someone else, they can be held liable for the resulting injuries. The causation element requires you to prove that your injuries would not have occurred but for the defendant’s breach of duty. Lastly, you have to prove what damages and injuries resulted from the accident by producing medical records and other evidence.
Common types of construction accidents satisfy these elements and can typically become the basis for a construction accident lawsuit. For example, employers can be held liable for injuries that result from a lack of safety training in New York City. Similarly, safety equipment manufacturers can be held liable for injuries from defective gear, and power tool manufacturers can be held liable for dangerous equipment malfunctions that injure workers. Responsible parties can be held liable for injuries from dropping tools off high places, and drivers alongside roadworks projects can be held liable for hitting construction workers with their car. Finally, property owners can be held responsible for failing to warn construction workers and contractors about dangerous conditions on their job site.
These and many other accidents can form the basis of a construction injury case, and our attorneys can help collect the evidence necessary to prove your injury case in court.
Who is Liable for Injuries or Wrongful Death on a New York City (NYC) Construction Site?
The circumstances surrounding your injury will help determine who should be held accountable. In many cases, an injured construction worker’s only remedy will be a Workers’ Compensation claim. However, there are situations where negligent parties can be held liable in court.
For example, the owner of the property could be held liable under certain circumstances – especially if there were known and unaddressed hazards on the property that caused you injury.
Under Workers’ Compensation law, you are prohibited from bringing a lawsuit against your employer without meeting certain conditions. If your injury involved a fall or scaffolding, among other types of accidents, a lawsuit against your boss might be available.
In some cases, the architect or engineer of the project could be held accountable for an injury if they failed to adhere to industry standards.
Construction workers often rely on their equipment to do the job. If their equipment or tools are defective, terrible injuries could occur. In this instance, the manufacturer of the equipment could be held responsible. Third-party lawsuits are the easiest to file following construction accidents, as construction worker victims are not restricted when suing third parties as they are when pursuing compensation against their employers. That said, no matter how your injury occurred, our construction injury lawyers will have to gather evidence to prove another party was negligent and must compensate you for your damages.
Should I File for Workers’ Compensation After a Construction Accident in New York City (NYC)?
Workplace liability insurance claims are supposed to be the primary way for victims of work injuries to get compensation in New York City. However, the damages paid through these claims are often insufficient to cover all of an injured construction worker’s injuries and needs.
Our construction injury lawyers will seek to get you full compensation for your injuries. This means getting coverage for medical bills and lost wages as well as pain and suffering, mental anguish, and other non-economic damages. Workplace liability insurance typically only pays damages for medical bills and lost wages, and these payments also have limitations. For this reason, only filing a claim with your employer’s insurance might not be the best route to compensation.
The law in New York blocks lawsuits against employers in many situations, but lawsuits against third parties are often available. This means you may be entitled to sue a negligent equipment manufacturer, a driver who crashes into your roadside crew, or any other party that is not your employer.
You are also able to sue an employer under certain circumstances. The law in New York creates exceptions to the ban on employee lawsuits for certain kinds of safety violations. The most common – and perhaps the most applicable for construction workers – is the Scaffold Law. This law allows lawsuits against an employer for their negligence in causing “gravity-based” injuries, such as falls from scaffolding or injuries from tools/materials dropped off of scaffolding.
When you file a lawsuit, you could be entitled to medical bills as well as lost wages (which are paid at only a percentage of your weekly wages through workplace liability insurance) and pain and suffering (which is blocked through workplace liability insurance). Because of this, our lawyers will investigate your accident to see if filing a lawsuit is an option in your construction injury case.
How Long Do I Have to File a Construction Accident Claim in New York City (NYC)?
If you have been injured in a construction accident in New York City, there are four deadlines that you need to know if you want to receive any compensation.
For a Worker’s Compensation claim, you must notify your employer within 30 days of the accident. Our lawyers advise informing your employer immediately. Any delay could hurt your chances of obtaining the financial help you deserve. If you have notified your employer within 30 days, you have two years to file a claim under your company’s workplace liability insurance. If this is your only option for recovery because your employer is to blame for your injuries, adhering to these deadlines will be important.
In situations where you can sue for your injuries, you have three years from the date of your accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. Again, our office recommends contacting our experienced lawyers sooner rather than later. If you wait two years to contact our office, valuable evidence will likely be lost.
Surviving family members may have the right to file a wrongful death claim if their loved one was killed in a construction accident. However, this type of legal action must be filed within two years of the death in New York City.
Failing to meet any of these deadlines will only result in serious issues for victims. When the statute of limitations is missed, so is a victim’s opportunity to recover compensation following a construction injury.
How Do I Prove Fault in a New York City (NYC) Construction Accident Case?
To prove negligence in a construction site accident, our lawyers will have to demonstrate four elements: duty, breach, causation, and harm. The evidence required to prove liability will depend on how the accident and injury occurred.
For example, if your injury was the result of faulty equipment, our office will look to gather evidence of maintenance records, training protocols, and even the original schematic from the manufacturer. When an accident occurs because of unsafe conditions at the construction site, our office will question site inspectors, other workers, and the property owner.
Or suppose you were injured in view of your peers. In that case, our construction injury lawyers can speak with your fellow workers or anyone else who might have witnessed your incident to get statements supporting your claim. Along with eyewitness statements, statements from experts, such as medical experts or engineering experts, may help to prove a defendant’s negligence.
If there were surveillance cameras on or near a construction site at the time of your accident, we can obtain footage from those cameras that might show your injury taking place. Video footage can be invaluable evidence, especially if it happens to show the at-fault party’s negligence. Subpoenaing video footage might be necessary and should be done as soon as possible to ensure it is not deleted.
In every case, medical evidence and documentation are crucial in building a personal injury claim, especially if you suffered a devastating construction accident injury. Report your accident to your employer immediately after it occurs. This is crucial to your chances of recovery. Then, go to the hospital. While you can typically get immediate medical care from any source, your continued medical care should be overseen by a medical professional approved by your employer’s workplace liability insurance. This will result in medical evidence that can be used in your construction injury case.
Can I File a Personal Injury Lawsuit on Behalf of a Loved One Who Died at a Construction Site in NYC?
A wrongful death claim is filed on behalf of the deceased. In New York, family members are not permitted to bring a wrongful death claim unless they are a representative of the victim’s estate.
Therefore, only estate representatives are allowed to file a wrongful death claim. The representative does not have to be a family member; it could be an attorney or other individual. Typically, the representative will be named in the victim’s will. If no personal representative has been named prior to the victim’s death, the court will name one. While not always the case, personal representatives are typically someone close to a victim, like their spouse or parent.
Nonetheless, the estate could pursue damages for the surviving family members, such as financial losses suffered by the family. If you have questions regarding a wrongful death claim, contact our lawyers.
In addition to a wrongful death claim, you may be able to file a concurrent survival action. This can allow you and your family to recover compensation for losses incurred by the victim prior to their death, including compensation for their pain and suffering.
When to Contact a Lawyer for Construction Injuries in NYC
If you were hurt in an accident on a construction site, you should call our lawyers as soon as you can. The longer victims wait, the more challenging it may become to hold negligent parties accountable in New York City.
Injury cases can take a long time. Evidence will need to be collected, cases will need to be filed in court, papers will need to be served on the defendants, discovery will need to be arranged, negotiations will take place, and a trial may need to happen. This process is best started as soon as you can start it – and our lawyers can help you move forward while you focus on healing.
Moreover, our lawyers can help make sure you meet any filing deadlines, and we can coordinate your care, keep records, and take other steps to keep your case on good footing. Call us as early in the process as you are able to.
There are many things that can strengthen your case that our lawyers can help you with. For example, you might not have thought to reach back out to eyewitnesses to get their statements. Or, you might have assumed that filing a claim with your employer’s workplace liability insurance was your only option for compensation and might not have considered the fact that a third-party lawsuit might be available. The sooner you reach out, the sooner we can help you explore your options.
What Kinds of Compensation Are Available to Victims of New York City (NYC) Construction Accidents?
“Damages” is the term used to describe financial and physical harm you have suffered due to a construction accident injury. Damages typically come in two categories: economic and non-economic. Punitive damages might also be available to construction accident victims in New York City.
Economic damages are your monetary losses attributable to the injury. Medical expenses typically make a significant portion of victims’ economic damages, including emergency treatment, surgery, hospital bills, medication, physical therapy, and any medical care they might require. Additionally, you may be able to recover lost wages or other out-of-pocket expenses related to your injuries, such as parking fees or childcare costs.
Along with proving that the defendant caused your injuries, you must also prove that you have incurred damages. Because of this, our attorneys will advise victims of construction accidents to keep detailed records of their economic damages. We will help you keep track of your losses so that we have evidence to support your requests for compensation.
In addition to compensating you for expenses you have already incurred, economic damages can compensate you for expenses you have yet to incur. Recovering compensation for future losses will require evidence and, in most cases, expert testimony. Medical experts can explain the future care you will require to help you heal from your injuries and provide clarity regarding your possible inability to return to work in the near future.
Non-economic damages are more difficult to understand. Most people are familiar with the phrase “pain and suffering.” Pain and suffering damages include various subjective harm such as emotional distress, physical pain, mental anguish, and anxiety. Our lawyers will calculate your non-economic damages based on the severity and impact of your injury.
This can be done by applying a dollar amount to the number of days you have struggled since your injuries or by applying a multiplier to your economic damages. Because New York does not limit a victim’s recovery of non-economic damages, compensation for such damages can be significant, especially in cases involving severe and life-altering injuries.
Just because non-economic damages are available does not mean they are guaranteed. You will have to prove that you have experienced pain and suffering because of the defendant’s negligence. To do this, you can keep a log of your difficulties following an incident. Statements from mental health professionals can be useful on this front as well.
Punitive damages are sometimes awarded to punish the person who caused the accident instead of compensating the victim for harm. Because of this, punitive damages are typically only awarded in cases of severe issues of negligence. Our attorneys can help our clients claim punitive damages against seriously dangerous construction firms, product manufacturers, and others with a history of malfeasance or where the specific accident at hand was caused by a serious lack of morals. These damages are rare, so discuss with our attorneys whether or not they will be available in your case.
How Can a New York City (NYC) Construction Accident Lawyer Help My Case?
Our attorneys help injury victims by handling their entire cases for them. We can advise you from day one about whether a workplace liability insurance claim or a lawsuit is right for you. We can help advise you on what evidence and records you will need to pursue your case. We can even take all of that evidence to court and argue for damages there if the case ends up needing to go to trial.
When you try to handle a construction accident case on your own through Workers’ Compensation, you may be limited regarding the damages you can claim. You may also feel intimidated to accept what you are given. Our lawyers can fight back and work to maximize your damages through a lawsuit if possible.
Our attorneys can also advise you on what your case is worth. Rather than relying on your employer or their insurance company to tell you what your claim is worth, our lawyers can do our own calculations. We can also hire financial experts for help projecting and calculating future lost wages and lost earning capacity. We can also speak with medical experts about your injuries and future limitations on work and how these will factor into the damages you should be entitled to.
Never pursue your injury case without speaking with a construction accident lawyer first. If you do accept any settlements, it might block your ability to claim additional damages, meaning that you could miss out on the compensation you need most.
Call Our NYC Lawyers About Your Construction Injuries Today
Call (718) 841-0083 to have The Carrion Law Firm’s construction injury lawyers assess your case for free.