A well-functioning construction site operates on the basis of safety over anything else, which is very important because of all of the different dangerous situations that arise daily in these busy areas. Each person working on the job site is trained to apply best practices in order to uphold these safety standards and trust that everyone who is working alongside is equally responsible and knowledgeable about these standards.
However, there are some situations where the safety standards are disregarded, or someone makes a human error that leads to an accident. In these events, the injuries can be catastrophic—even life-threatening. For most workers on the job site, they are likely covered under workers’ compensation in order to protect them from the financial impacts of the injuries, which will be discussed in further detail below. Alternately, there are many possible scenarios when an individual who is not associated with the construction site is injured, possibly as a result of an improper warning sign for passersby, unclear boundaries of the construction site, or something else entirely. These people are not covered under workers’ compensation and will need to seek compensation from other channels.
Who Can Seek Compensation For Construction Injuries?
Whether you are a worker or have no association with the construction site that you were injured on, contact us now to schedule an initial consultation and learn about how we can help. The following information is intended to provide you with a brief overview of the actions you can expect whether you are working on a workers’ compensation claim, or if we will be seeking personal injury damages from the responsible party. The specifics of your situation will be much more complicated than the information provided, and may ultimately take a completely different course than what this information may indicate.
When a construction site accident occurs, the worker who is harmed can take legal action to obtain monetary compensation for losses. If the incident leads to fatal injuries, surviving family members may also receive monetary damages via a wrongful death action. An experienced San Diego construction accident lawyer at Injury Trial Lawyers, APC can help you to understand your rights and pursue your damage claim. Call today to speak with a member of our legal team.
Understanding Construction Accident Law
Navigating construction accident law can be overwhelming, especially if you are trying to recover from injuries at the same time that you are trying to make sense of your situation and the best way to move forward. There are many different cases where you will be covered by worker’s compensation, but there are an equal number of instances where someone may find themselves injured in a situation that is either in a “gray area” about whether or not it is work-related or may not be covered by worker’s compensation at all. In other cases still, a victim of an accident may find that they are entitled to seek additional compensation from parties who are not involved with the worker’s compensation policy that they carry, which can further complicate matters.
The best way to understand your rights, options, and the path forward is to work with an experienced construction accident injury attorney in San Diego. Instead of trying to understand the information that you need to provide, the types of actions that you should take, and ultimately the type of compensation that you deserve, you should be able to focus on recovery with confidence that your legal team is representing you in a way that will get you the money that you are entitled to.
Construction Site Accident Facts
The California Department of Labor Statistics included the following data regarding construction site accidents:
- Non-fatal injuries: 28,000
- Non-fatal injuries requiring days off from work: 246 workers per every 10,000 employees
- Fatal Injuries: 309 (accounting for 16% of all workplace fatalities in California)
- Of the 69 cases in 2017, 32 fatalities in Construction were from Falls, Trips, and Slips and 15 from Transportation Incidents.
- 44% of occupational fatalities in 2013–2017 were among Hispanic or Latino workers.
The leading causes of construction site fatalities occurred as a result of:
- Contact with objects and equipment: 48%
- Slip and fall incidents: 36%
- Transportation incidents: 21%
- Electrocutions: 9%
These statistics about construction accidents in California can be alarming, but it can be very encouraging to know that there is an attorney out there who is ready to help you get the money and the treatment that you rightfully deserve. Contact the team at Injury Trial Lawyers, APC as soon as possible to start working on your case and fighting for the money that you deserve.
We know that if you have been injured on the job you are going through a tough time. Our personal injury attorneys have handled hundreds of these cases, and we know how to make sure you get the compensation you deserve.
Compensation After a Construction Site Accident
If a construction worker is hurt on-the-job, he should be covered by workers’ compensation as employers are required by law to carry worker’s comp insurance.
Because of worker’s comp, you cannot usually sue the employer. Worker’s comp should cover:
- Medical bills paid in full,
- Disability income through his employer or his employer’s insurance company, and
- Death benefits are available in the event of a fatal construction site injury
Medical, disability and death benefits can be obtained by the worker or his family members regardless of whether an employer was negligent, and even in some circumstances where the worker may have made errors that led to his own on-the-job injuries. However, workers’ comp benefits do not cover pain and suffering damages.
While construction workers cannot usually sue employers, it is possible that the employer was reckless or negligent. In these situations, our attorneys will seek compensation directly from the employer and beyond worker’s comp.
It may also be possible to make a third-party injury claim against others who were responsible for a construction site accident. For example:
- Project engineers, or
- Manufacturers of construction equipment
could all be sued by a worker hurt on a construction site. When a personal injury or wrongful death claim is filed, the construction worker or his family may need to show that the defendant was unreasonably careless or that a design defect in a construction tool was the direct cause of the damage.
Non-employees who happen to be harmed on construction sites can also take legal action through a personal injury or wrongful death claim. We can help you to pursue your case if you are a victim of an accident.
Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim
If you are professionally associated with the construction site, then you will need to move forward with a claim through your employer’s workers’ compensation policy. These policies are intended to act as insurance for both you and your employer, in that this policy protects the employer for being sued, and protects the employee from medical expenses and lost wages. Whereas a personal injury lawsuit allows a victim to seek additional compensation from the responsible party for non-economic impacts, workers’ compensation only covers the basics. In addition, these policies protect employers from charges of negligence, as these policies are known as “no-fault.”
Workers’ compensation claims processes are intended to be fairly straightforward, but it is still very helpful to work with a construction accident attorney through the process to make sure that you get all of the compensation that you deserve. In some cases, we may identify that your accident was caused by a situation beyond the policy limits of your workers’ compensation, meaning that we will need to identify alternative, tort-based actions to get you the protection that you deserve. In either case, we will be able to manage the paperwork and legal actions necessary to get your compensation while you are able to focus on physical recovery.
Seeking Damages as a Civilian in a Construction Accident
If you are injured in a construction accident but you are not associated with the job site in any way, then you will likely need to file a claim through an insurance company. However, the specific insurance protections that the responsible party has will dictate the actual steps we will follow. In any case, we will use this opportunity to explore all of the different impacts that the accident and injuries have had on your life, and we will make sure that we are able to take any and all steps towards getting you the money you need and deserve to get your life back on track.
We will investigate the situation that led up to the accident, as well as identify any negligent or reckless behavior that contributed to your injuries. From there, we will either work directly with the insurance company through a series of negotiations or will decide if it is appropriate to move straight into the California courts to seek your damages through a personal injury lawsuit. Each case that we take is customized to the situation at hand, so there is no simple answer that we can offer here that will determine our course of action for your injuries.
Frequently Asked Questions About Construction Site Accidents
The following are just a few examples of questions that we are happy to answer for our prospective clients. Keep in mind that once we are working together, we will deep-dive into each of these questions in order to build a comprehensive case and clear goals for our time together.
How much is my case worth?
As mentioned in the sections above, there are many different factors and details that go into determining the actual amount of money that a victim is entitled to, whether they are filing a personal injury claim or a workers’ compensation claim. The victim’s income plays a central role in determining this amount, as does the severity of their injuries and the amount of medical bills that they face.
When you are working with Injury Trial Lawyers, APC, you can be confident that every single possible factor will be considered as we build your case and start fighting for what you deserve. There is a number that an insurance company owes you, and a number that you deserve—we will make sure that you get what you are entitled to.
Why is it important to hire a construction accident attorney?
When you are facing a construction company, workers compensation board, or any other representative team that you are attempting to seek compensation from, you can be certain that their primary focus is not on getting you all that you deserve: they are focused on limiting the amount of money that they must pay in order to settle your claim.
When you are trying to focus on recovery, the last thing that you should need to divert your attention and energy to is navigating a complicated legal process. In fact, insurance companies and legal teams rely on this fact to hopefully convince you to accept less than what your case is worth. We will not let that happen.
Do I need a lawyer if I am working on a worker’s compensation claim?
While a worker’s compensation claim is handled differently than a personal injury claim, for a variety of reasons, it can still be extremely helpful to work with a personal injury attorney throughout the claim process. You will not be seeking legal action against your employer, since the worker’s compensation policy blocks these types of actions, but there may be alternative paths forward depending on who was at fault and more. Worker’s compensation does not account for non-economic injuries, but if someone is responsible for your injuries and is not protected by the “no-fault” clause in the compensation policy then you may be able to seek these damages from them.
Hire an Experienced San Diego Construction Accident Lawyer
Because there are multiple possible ways to obtain compensation and multiple possible defendants who can be held responsible for your construction injuries, you need to get legal advice as soon as possible after your construction accident.
Injury Trial Lawyers, APC has been representing clients and helping them to obtain monetary compensation for all damages and losses. We know how to negotiate with insurance companies as well as how to present a convincing case to a jury if your claim does not settle outside of court.
Our San Diego construction accident attorneys do not charge legal fees unless we obtain monetary compensation for your losses, and we offer free case evaluations to help you understand your legal rights. Contact our personal injury attorneys today and to learn how we can assist with your claim.