Construction accidents were the most common cause of workplace fatalities in New York City in 2014. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 78 fatal work injuries, 22 of which occurred in the construction industry. Nationwide, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) reports 899 of the 4,386 worker fatalities in 2014 came from the construction industry. While injured workers often just file a workers’ compensation claim, they may have other options. For help, call a New York construction accident lawyer.
Set up a consultation with an attorney at Buttafuoco & Associates today: 1-800-NOW-HURT.
Common Types of New York Construction Accidents
A fall from a height can happen on any platform: ladders, scaffolding, or catwalks.
In many cases, these falls occur due to defective equipment such as ladders that do not latch and hold properly. A negligent scaffolding company might also be to blame if it fails to properly construct and secure the supports. Your employer may also be negligent if he fails to provide proper and maintain safety equipment in good working order.
Trapped by Falling Structures
Anyone who has been on a construction site is no stranger to scaffolding. While these structures are usually safe, they sometimes collapse and crush unsuspecting workers. These collapses can be the result of another negligent worker, a careless employer, or a manufacturer that sold a defective product.
Being Hit by a Falling Object
Falling objects/debris are a common occurrence at any construction site. To prevent injury from falling objects and debris, the foreman should install safety netting and all workers should wear hard hats.
Numerous types of vehicles are in use on the typical construction site. Vehicle accidents can occur both on the site and during travel to and from the site. Altercations with negligent drivers, poor road conditions, and load shifting are just a few examples of how vehicle accidents occur during construction jobs.
Injuries from Defective Equipment
From heavy machinery to simple tools, a malfunctioning piece of equipment can cause catastrophic injuries and damage to workers and structures alike.
Workers’ Compensation Claims
Under New York’s workers’ compensation laws, all employers must hold workers’ compensation insurance coverage for work-related accidents and injuries. It is important to note that the law does not require employers offer workers’ compensation coverage to independent contractors. If you were injured on the job, figure out your job status to ensure that your employer’s insurance covers you.
While workers’ compensation claims should be easy, the insurer may deny your claim, stating that your injuries are fabricated, exaggerated, or preexisting or that you purposefully injured yourself. A New York construction accident attorney can help you get the benefits you need and deserve for your work injury.
Workers’ compensation benefits are a big help when you are out of work, but a standard workers’ compensation claim will only do so much. As per New York workers’ compensation laws, the weekly maximum wage reimbursement through June 30, 2017 is only $864.32.
Fortunately, you may have another option. If your injury was the result of a third party’s negligence, you may be eligible to file a third-party claim.
What is a third-party claim and when can I file one?
Construction site accidents result in severely disabling or fatal injuries more often than most other occupations. Do not settle for workers’ compensation benefits alone when another party’s negligence caused your harm.
For example, if you were injured by a negligent driver in a vehicle accident on your work site, you may be eligible to file a claim against that driver.
You may also be able to file a third-party claim in the case of defective equipment. For instance, if you were injured by a defective circular saw, you may able to file a claim if you are able to prove your injuries stemmed from a defect.
Why would I file a third-party claim?
While filing a workers’ compensation claim is generally easier because you do not need to prove fault, you are only able to recover compensation for economic damages.
With a third-party claim, you are eligible to recover both economic damages and noneconomic damages, such as pain and suffering and mental anguish.
Filing workers’ compensation claims and third-party claims can be difficult. Buttafuoco & Associates is here to help injured New York construction workers obtain the compensation they deserve and return to work when possible. Call 1-800-NOW-HURT for a free case review today.