Construction sites are very dangerous places and the people who work at construction sites are required to take many safety precautions. These precautions are not always followed, and sometimes innocent people can get seriously hurt or even killed. The most common forms of construction accidents include: falls, ladder accidents, scaffold collapses, electric shocks, failure to identify hazardous materials, trench collapses, failure to distribute proper safety equipment, and failure to make sure that workers know how to safely use the construction equipment on the site.
If you or someone you love has suffered an injury due to a construction accident, you need to speak with an attorney. At the law offices of David I. Pankin, P.C. we take the time to get all the facts and investigate all the possible avenues of recovery for our clients in order to ensure the maximum compensation for their injuries. While most construction accidents are essentially worker’s compensation cases, there are also cases that can be brought under New York’s Labor Laws. When applicable we will bring a lawsuit separate from any worker’s compensation claim and go after any third party defendants whose negligence caused the accident.
Workers’ Compensation in Construction Accident Cases
Whenever a construction worker is hurt as a result of performing the tasks they were hired to do, he or she should be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits are paid by either the employer or the employer’s workers’ compensation insurer. Because construction accidents inherently involve workers as a category of accident, they generally will include the filing of workers’ compensation claims. Workers’ compensation benefits include both full coverage of medical costs and partial payment of lost wages. Additionally, if a worker is disabled by the accident, he or she may also be eligible to receive social security disability benefits. To read more about Worker’s Compensation click here.
New York Labor Laws
A construction worker involved in a work-related accident will sometimes have a viable claim against the owner of the construction site or the general contractor. There are three New York Labor Laws that come into play when filing a construction accident lawsuit: New York Labor Laws 200, 240(1) and 241(6). These laws place restrictions on general contractors and property owners, requiring them to maintain both a safe worksite and safe worksite. Section 200 of the New York State Labor Law requires the use of reasonable care when maintaining a work site. Labor Law 240(1), also known as New York's “scaffold law.” It places strict liability on the general contractor and owner (except for owners of one and two-family dwellings) for construction site accidents where “proper protection” was not provided to workers. This law seeks to protect workers who are injured by or on ladders, scaffolds, slings, hangers, pulleys, ropes, or other similar devices. Under Labor Law 241(6), property owners and contractors are given the responsibility to provide “reasonable and adequate protection and safety” during the excavation, demolition, or construction of a building.
Workers’ compensation is the sole remedy for workers against employers in most construction accident cases since workers are usually not allowed to sue their employers, however third parties may be sued in personal injury and wrongful death actions provided the third party bears responsibility for accident. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, a third-party lawsuit may be brought when the wrongdoing or negligence of a non-employer contributed to the cause of a construction accident. For example, third party lawsuits are often brought against general contractors, land owners or other parties for their misdeeds. This type of lawsuit allows for larger amount of compensation than is generally allowed through the workers’ compensation system.
At the law firm of David I. Pankin P.C. we know how construction accidents can devastate one’s physical and mental welling by reducing one’s earning potential and placing additional pressures on one’s family life. This is why our attorneys work hard in order to obtain compensation and benefits that our clients deserve. It is important to pursue your claim and to do everything possible to maximize your compensation and benefits. You only have a limited amount of time to bring your claim after the accident, so if you or a loved one was hurt or killed in a construction accident, please call (888) 529-9600 to setup a free consultation or fill out or Free Legal Analysis form.