The construction accident lawyers at Cellino Law understand that many workers injured on the job in Garden City do not have a lot of knowledge of their rights. Many people are not aware that they can get compensation for workplace injuries, and some victims believe that the only financial compensation they can get is a payment to cover the medical expenses that they faced.
Injuries and long-term illnesses caused by accidents can take a long time to recover from. In some cases, it can take years to get over an accident, and there are huge costs associated with recovery in the form of ongoing medical bills and loss of earnings. When faced with these expenses, many victims decide to turn to an experienced Garden City construction accident lawyer to help them get the financial compensation they are entitled to.
We are here to help if you or someone close to you has been injured in a workplace construction accident. The first thing that you should do is book a consultation with a personal injury lawyer from one of the top law firms in Garden City. We’re here to help our clients get the full amount of compensation that they are entitled to.
Table of Contents
Labor Laws In The Construction Industry In New York
The construction industry can be high risk, in a lot of ways, and workers will be exposed to some danger, especially in a major area such as the state of New York. The Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that 5% of New Yorkers are employed in the construction industry and that 27% of fatal work-related injuries occur in that industry. This shows that construction workers are faced with a significant risk of injury, especially when compared with other major employment sectors in New York.
There are numerous laws in place to help protect the rights and the safety of construction industry workers. Many accidents can be avoided by following the rules. The problems come when employers or site managers violate or ignore those rules, leading to an accident. If this happens, the employee would be within their rights to file a lawsuit.
A lawsuit should cover more than the compensation that an injured employee would be able to get with Worker’s Compensation Benefits since the employee is in a good position to request for more damage compensation after the lawsuit is filed to take into account things such as loss of income, medical expenses, retirement benefits, and in some cases pain and suffering.
The construction labor laws in New York include sections to govern the rights that an employee has when it comes to seeking injury compensation. The sections worth paying attention to are 200, 240, and 241. These cover how construction workers must be protected with the implementation of safety measures. Voiding of these rules could lead to a worker suffering serious injury. If a company or a supervisor violates these rules then they will be held accountable for any incidents that occur.
Section 200 Of The New York Labor Law
This section says that employers are required to provide construction workers with a safe working environment. It describes the precautions that an employer must take to ensure that all those working on a site are safe. It also lists precautions that employers must take when it comes to installing or using the equipment.
Section 240 Of The New York Labor Law
Section 240 of the New York Labor Law says that third parties can be held accountable in the event of an accident at a construction site. Worker’s Compensation may not cover the full extent of the losses after an accident. This could occur if, for example, a third party is deemed responsible for a scaffolding accident.
This section of the New York Labor Law focuses on the party that is liable for scaffolding-related incidents. When work is performed on a property, the owner of the property, the tenants, or the contractor may be held accountable for losses or injuries in the event of an accident. Accountability is absolute, and this means that the only thing to be disputed is the amount of compensation available.
In the event of damage or injuries that are severe, the compensation to be paid out is likely to be high. This means a third party is likely to try to argue that the accident should not be covered under this statute. Consideration must be paid to the type of building that the accident relates to. Accidents could occur on water towers, bridges, garages, tunnels, commercial or residential properties. The structure does play a role in the lawsuit. For a worker to qualify to make an accident claim, they must have been performing one of the following tasks when they were injured:
If you have suffered an injury in a construction site and believe that you are covered under the scaffold law, you should seek advice from an attorney as soon as possible. The trained legal professionals at Cellino Law will help you recover the compensation that you are entitled to from the relevant third party. We will work with you to help you get the ideal outcome from your case, and to support you as you navigate the court system.
Section 241 Of The New York Labor Law
Under this section of the New York labor law, the contractor and owner are responsible for ensuring that all employees are properly protected against any hazards that might lead to injury. This section of the labor law specifies the job site safety requirements that must be followed. For example, it might lay out how a contractor should place a barrier around a construction elevator to prevent unauthorized access. It may also layout the type of protective equipment that workers should wear while on-site, or the precautions that an employer should take to minimize the risk of slips, trips, and falls. The law is designed to ensure that all employees are safe and protected while on the job site.
These requirements, as laid out in the law, ensure that the working environment is safe for all employees. If a contractor or employer violates any of the requirements mentioned in this section of the law and their actions (or inaction) results in an accident, they will be held liable for those injuries because they will be deemed to have been negligent.
Who Can Be Accountable For Construction Accidents In Garden City Workplaces?
You may have noticed that construction is taking place all around the state. There are many workers employed in this sector, and that’s why there are special laws to ensure that construction workers are properly protected. The New York Labor Laws lay out who will be held accountable in the event of a construction accident.
General Contractors And Construction Owners
The construction owner and the general contractor both have a responsibility to ensure that the employee is working under appropriate and safe conditions. The law demands contractors give employees reasonable levels of protection, including protective equipment, under the New York Labor Law Section 200. All site owners must meet this legal obligation. If they fail to do so and there is a work-related accident or an employee becomes injured, they must attend to the issue immediately. Workers must have everything that they need to stay safe in the workplace.
Construction workers must be properly trained. Section 240, known as The Scaffolding Law, says that all equipment used in construction sites must be properly secured. Property owners or contractors may be held responsible if an employee is injured as a result of a failure of:
- Other similar devices
The law applies if the worker is doing any form of work on the building, such as cleaning, repairing, erecting a structure, demolishing, or painting. The worker or victim does not have to show proof of negligence in this case, because the owner or contractor is strictly liable under the New York Labor Laws.
It is not uncommon for construction work to be awarded to groups of subcontractors. The lead contractor outsources parts of the work to other subcontractors. All subcontractors have the responsibility of providing their workers with the tools and training required and must ensure that the working environment is safe. If an employee is injured while at work then the subcontractor is responsible.
Engineers And Architects
Site engineers or architects may be deemed accountable for an injury sustained by a construction worker while on-site in New York. The engineer and architect are responsible for designing the building, and they must meet certain standards with their designs. Construction sites in the Garden City must be inspected regularly. If an injury occurs as a result of structural problems then a case could be made that the architect or engineer was liable for the accident.
This scenario only applies if it is found that there was a flaw in the design of the building, or if the building has structural issues.
Construction sites rely on a lot of machines, each of which has a dedicated task. Defective machinery may cause injury, even if the person operating the machine is trained and wearing proper protective equipment. If you have been injured in the process of operating construction equipment, the manufacturer or supplier of the equipment could be held accountable for the accident.
Types Of Construction Injuries Commonly Seen In Garden City
There are many different types of construction injuries. It does not matter what type of injury you sustained, or how severe the injury was. We are here to help you. To ensure you get excellent service, we will need to understand what happened and work out the best course of action for securing the compensation that you deserve. We have helped numerous clients across New York who have been injured on construction sites. Here we list some of the common construction site injuries that we hear about from clients in Garden City:
- Crush injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
- Knee and shoulder injuries
- Bone fractures and breaks
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Eye injuries causing loss of vision
- Hearing loss
- Abrasions and lacerations
- Bone fractures or breaks
The Cost Of Construction Injuries
There are many potential expenses that someone may face as a result of a construction-related accident. Individual expenses will depend on the type of injury, treatment required, and whether it affects the person’s ability to work. Injuries are often costly and can come with many unseen and unexpected factors. Construction injury costs can include:
Medical bills are the most obvious expense that is associated with any injury. The person who is injured must seek medical treatment and that may require ambulances, trauma care, hospitalization, surgery, medication, and other care all of which will need to be paid for. Rehabilitation and ongoing care after the injury will add to the overall cost. The stress of paying for these things should not be underestimated. Many accident victims incur huge debts from medical expenses alone.
Loss Of Earnings
Someone who is injured on a construction site may not be able to go back to work in their usual capacity in the short term, or even long term. The longer a person needs treatment, the longer they may be unable to work. Some injuries can result in long-term disabilities, meaning that the person cannot work, or needs the training to find another position. While they are unable to work they may need to apply for disability benefits that may not cover their usual standard of living.
The injured person may have to apply for a Worker’s Compensation Claim. This, if awarded, may lead to the insurance premium for the company increasing. This causes the company to have greater operating costs. This is one of the often-overlooked expenses associated with work-related accidents.
When a company is faced with a personal injury lawsuit, they will end up with several associated litigation costs, including the need to hire legal representation, and potentially the need to pay the judgment related costs if they lose the suit.
The total cost of an injury can mount up quickly, and it’s not just the injured party that faces expenses. The company that they worked for faces expenses too and will end up passing those expenses on to customers, as well as potentially lowering pay or cutting benefits for other employees. That’s why it’s so important for companies to take steps to keep workers safe. When it comes to injuries in the workplace, especially in the construction sector, those in charge need to do everything they can to avoid people facing injuries.
Worker’s Compensation Benefits And What They Cover
Under the law in New York, companies are required to have Workers’ Compensation Coverage up to a reasonable amount. There are some notable exceptions to the cover, however. Worker’s Compensation can cover physical injury, occupational illness, toxic exposure, and many health conditions that someone may develop due to their job, but it does not cover mental health. It can be used to support those who are faced with a long-term disability as a result of a workplace-related incident.
Workers should not assume that if they get injured they will be eligible for Worker’s Compensation benefits without having to do anything. A worker must file a claim as soon as possible and must do the paperwork correctly. There are strict procedures and deadlines associated with worker’s compensation benefits. If they do not follow the procedures properly then they may miss out on their benefit payments.
How Can A Garden City Construction Accident Lawyer Help Me?
Workers may be eligible for several different benefits, depending on how severe the injury was that they sustained and how the injury affects them. Some of the benefits that they can receive include:
- Approximately 2/3 of their weekly pay
- Cover for reasonable medical expenses
- Short-term, or permanent, disability benefit payments
Some workers assume that they will get all of the above forms of compensation following their injury. The insurance company will work to reduce the benefits that they have to pay. This makes it hard for injured workers to obtain the payments they are entitled to. Remember that an insurance company is a business, and their goal is to pay out as little as possible so that the policies that they sell make a profit overall. They have several ways of avoiding paying out on worker’s compensation policies. Tactics that they use include:
- Arguing that an injured worker does not need medical treatment
- Arguing that an injured worker should be able to return to work
- Disputing the time-off the worker took following their injury
- Disputing the severity of the injury
- Denying that the injury was caused by the worker’s job
If you have been injured at work and are struggling to obtain the benefits that you feel you deserve, you do have the option of disputing the decision. This will require being seen by an administrative law judge. It is important to work with a construction accident lawyer if you try to take your employer or the insurance company to court. An experienced lawyer will have a good understanding of the Worker’s Compensation System as it operates in New York, and this increases your chances of getting the compensation you deserve.
What To Do If You Are Involved In A Construction Accident
Worker’s Compensation Benefits and Third-Party compensation payments are not guaranteed. You may be denied benefits if you make a mistake when you fill out the claim forms, for example. You may also be granted a claim but for less compensation than you expected. To protect your rights, you should make sure that you follow the correct steps.
Seek Medical Attention Immediately
Getting medical attention for your injuries is the most important thing. Either go to the emergency room or, if you cannot do this, call an ambulance. Your physician will recommend a course of treatment document everything that they say, and keep records of any bills you are given as well. Keep receipts for all incidental expenses, and make sure that you comply with any recommended treatments or physical therapy suggestions. If your symptoms change or worsen, make a note of how and when, and how the change impacts your day to day life.
Report The Accident To Your Employer Immediately
You should inform your employer about the injury immediately if you can do so. If your injury is serious, seek medical attention then report the incident as soon as you are able. Keep your employer up to date with any changes to your condition and with anything that your doctor has told you.
Confirm That Your Employer Filed A Report
Once you have informed your employer of the incident, they are obliged to write their report. You are entitled to receive a copy of this report. Request a copy, read it, and make sure that it is accurate. Keep hold of a copy of the report because you may require it as a part of your claim.
Get Statements From Witnesses
Talk to anyone who saw what happened, and request statements from them. The statements may be important if your claim is disputed. Keep written or recorded copies of the statements.
Keep All Documentation
You will be asked to describe the accident several times throughout the claim process. You should make sure that any statements you make are correct and that there are no discrepancies. Write down all of the key details so that you can refer to it later. Keep copies of all expenses, doctor’s records, and correspondence.
Speak To A Garden City Construction Accident Lawyer
Working with an experienced attorney will help to improve your chances of making a successful claim. Seek the help of a personal injury professional in the Garden City so that you can get the support you need to ensure your rights are respected. The law firm will deal with all of the stressful elements of the case for you, allowing you to recover in peace.
What You Need To Know About Fatal Accidents
Every year, there are more than 4,000 fatal accidents in the workplace, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The construction industry accounts for more than 1,000 of these, making it the most dangerous of all industries. If a family member was involved in a fatal accident, you may be able to claim compensation from their Worker’s Compensation policy. The policy will cover death benefits and can be used to pay funeral or burial costs. There is also the possibility of being paid in installments for temporary disability benefits.
Wrongful death compensation may be available in some cases if it can be proved that the death was caused by negligence, carelessness, or wrongful action on the part of a third-party. Wrongful death can only be awarded if the claimant can prove that the death was caused by a third-party’s carelessness or negligence, and can also prove that the third party was at fault and that the death caused losses for the close family members of the deceased.
In the state of New York, wrongful death compensation options include several that are not covered by Worker’s Compensation, such as pain and suffering, loss of companionship, loss of financial support, and loss of parental guidance. Talk to our Garden City attorneys to learn more about the support and compensation you may be able to claim for your tragic loss.
If a loved one has lost their life while working on a construction site, you should contact a Garden City construction accident lawyer before you sign or accept any settlement that is offered. Talking to a qualified wrongful death attorney will help you to get the compensation that you are entitled to, and take the stress out of making a claim. Contact the team at Cellino Law to learn more about your legal options. We offer a free, no-obligation initial consultation. Book your consultation today and start on the path to obtaining the compensation you deserve.