What are my rights in a construction site injury?

If injured on a construction site, it’s imperative that you know your rights and how to handle your injury claims. You need to know who will cover your medical costs and if you’ll have paid time off during any absence necessary for your recovery. You’ll be eligible for worker’s compensation, but your employer or an equipment manufacturer may also bear responsibility. You need a lawyer to help protect your interests and ensure you’re getting the help you need. Our De Castroverde team shares what you need to know if you get injured on a construction site.

Construction Site Injuries

What are my rights in a construction site injury?

Working in construction can be dangerous. Construction workers operate heavy machinery, use power tools, handle complicated equipment, and come in contact with hazardous chemicals and electrical components. Work is often performed in dangerous settings or at great heights. Therefore, the potential for accidents at a construction site is high.

Here are some causes of potential injuries:

  • Falling objects: These incidents can cause brain injuries, not all of which may be immediately apparent.
  • Machine malfunction: You can be seriously injured if something goes wrong with a machine.
  • Getting caught in machinery: It’s possible to get caught inside a machine or pinned underneath it if it malfunctions or if there’s a collision with another piece of machinery on-site.
  • Falling from scaffolding: These accidents can result in brain injury, spine injury, and broken bones.
  • Slips and falls: A fall or slip on a construction site can result in various injuries.
  • Fires and explosions: You may suffer bad burns, requiring extensive medical treatment.
  • Contaminants: Improper exposure to pollutants such as toxic chemicals and asbestos.
  • Lack of proper training: This can result in improper or unsafe usage of dangerous equipment, leading to injury.

Who Is Liable for a Construction Site Injury?

A construction site injury can result in various parties being held liable, such as:

Insurance Companies

One essential component of determining liability in a construction site accident is insurance. The owner’s or possessor’s insurance policy must comply with the standards set forth by worker’s compensation. Determining legal responsibility in a construction site accident or injury often hinges on the coverage provided by each party’s insurance policy.

Construction Site Owner

The construction site owner may be the landowner or a contractor. During construction, the landowner’s control over a construction site may change. The person who owns the site may not be regarded as the legal owner of the land during construction if they have handed over control of the property to the contractor they’ve hired.

In this case, the person considered the land possessor would be liable for any on-site accidents. This applies to injury or death to those who have been invited onto the property to work. Construction workers are referred to as invitees, and the current possessor of the property must inform all invitees of any known hazards on the land. They’re also obligated to ensure the workers’ safety.

General and Sub-General Contractors

A contractor must ensure workers’ safety on their construction site and provide a reasonably safe workspace. The contractor is also legally obligated to inform all workers of any potential hazards or defects on the construction site.

The contractor must ensure that employees are informed about any inherent hazards during their work duties. A contractor also ensures that all on-site work is performed safely. Part of the contractor’s duty begins with the hiring process, as they should be diligent in hiring employees that are able and competent enough to complete the work in compliance with all safety regulations.

Prime Contractors

A prime contractor refers to a party only responsible for work outlined in their prime contract. Prime contractors are also responsible for work they may delegate to a subcontractor. This includes the payment and work quality of the subcontractor. A prime contractor could be held liable if an injury occurs during the portion of the work they oversee.

Manufacturers of Construction Machinery or Equipment

If a machine or construction equipment malfunctions on a construction site, the manufacturer may be liable if the accident or injury resulted from a faulty design or a defective part.

Architects and Engineers

Architects and engineers are design professionals responsible for ensuring that the building or project they designed is practical and safe. Their duties are detailed in their contract and include the expectation that their design and the construction site will adhere to all safety codes. They can be held liable if they fail to meet the professional standards outlined in their agreement, and an accident or injury occurs due to their negligence.

What’s Covered by Worker’s Compensation?

Depending on your case, coverage may include the following:

  • Medical treatment.
  • Chiropractic care.
  • Vocational rehabilitation.
  • Temporary disability.
  • Permanent disability.

If a worker dies due to their injuries, their family may be able to recover death benefits in the form of income replacement.

Should You Hire a Personal Injury and Accident Lawyer?

The reason for hiring a personal injury lawyer to assist you with your case is that proving liability in a construction accident is complex and may involve several responsible parties. This can confuse the process if you don’t know how to determine which parties are responsible for your injury. The site owner or insurance company can take advantage of your inexperience with the process to deprive you of compensation, giving you less than you deserve or nothing at all.

Our team at De Castroverde Law Group will help you navigate the complexities of your case so that you can focus on your recovery. Being injured on the job at a construction site is difficult enough, don’t wear yourself out dealing with insurance companies and other parties that may be liable for your accident. Let us fight for you to ensure you get the compensation you deserve so you don’t have to worry about growing stacks of unpaid medical bills or mounting household bills while you’re out of work. Contact us at 702-803-3796 or complete our secure online form to get started.

Photo Credit: Construction Site (1) by Carl Campbell is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0