Queens Construction Accident Lawyer
We Handle Construction Accident Claims in Queens and Throughout New York City
Construction is a critical part of our economy and the development of our city and our country. Over the last several years, the construction industry has boomed in Queens and throughout New York City. Unfortunately, construction sites are not always as safe as they should be. Too many construction workers (and other people) are injured or killed because construction companies, property owners, and other firms fail to take the proper safety precautions.
At Sullivan & Galleshaw LLP, we recognize the important role that construction workers play in all of our lives, and appreciate the work that construction employees do. But we also know that construction is a dangerous industry, and that construction workers are at high risk of an accident in comparison to workers in other industries. If you have been involved in a construction accident, our Queens construction accident lawyers will work hard for you. We know that you deserve to be compensated – call our law firm today to learn more about how we can help.
Common Construction Accidents
As stated, construction workers are at an especially high risk of injury compared to workers in other industries. As reported by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the “fatal four” types of construction accidents include:
- Electrocution injuries;
- Fall accidents;
- Caught-in/between machinery accidents; and
- Struck by object accidents.
In addition to the fatal four–which are called such because they lead to the highest number of construction worker fatalities–other common types of accidents in the construction industry include falling debris accidents, slip and falls (as compared to falls from heights), explosion accidents, machinery and vehicle accidents, trench and ground collapses, repetitive motion injuries, and more.
Causes of Construction Accidents
A construction site accident can happen for a wide variety of different reasons. Not every accident has one single cause. Indeed, construction accidents can be the result of numerous factors. Some common causes of construction accidents include:
- Worker negligence, including using equipment improperly, disregarding safety recommendations, or engaging in horseplay;
- Machinery and equipment defects, which may lead to liability of a machinery or equipment manufacturer or distributor;
- Employer negligence, such as failing to properly train staff or provide safety equipment;
- Safety equipment defects; and
- Failure to adhere to safety recommendations/training.
As some construction accident injury claims (third party liability claims, non-worker personal injury claims) are based on fault, every construction accident must be comprehensively investigated to determine precisely what happened and why it occurred.
An Overview of the Construction Site Safety Laws in New York
Construction safety is incredibly important. Sadly, far too many construction companies, contractors, and developers cut corners on safety. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), more than 20 percent of all workplace fatalities reported in the United States happen within the construction industry. New York State has specialized rules and regulations in place to help ensure that construction sites are as safe as they should be for workers and members of the general public. Here are three of the most important construction safety laws:
- New York Labor Law § 200: Section 200 of NY’s labor code is a generalized statute that allows construction workers in the state to file a fault-based personal injury lawsuit directly against a defendant that breached its duties and failed to adequately provide safe conditions in the workplace.
- New York Labor Law § 240(1): Fall accidents and falling objects are among the most common causes of serious injuries at construction sites in New York City. Section 240(1) of NY’s labor code regulates scaffolding. The statute holds that construction companies and other firms can be held legally liable for any construction worker “falls from height” that happens because of negligence.
- New York Labor Law § 241(6): Another important construction safety law, Section 241(6) of the NY State labor code allows injured construction workers to hold negligent parties directly liable for accidents/injuries that happen because the defendant violated any specific provision in the state’s labor/industrial safety code.
The Bottom Line: New York State has some of the most comprehensive, well-developed construction site safety laws in the entire country. If you or your family member was hurt while working on a construction site and then an accident occurred because of a violation of New York’s construction safety laws, you must consult with a Queens, NY construction accident attorney right away. A New York construction injury lawyer will protect your rights.
Workers’ Compensation vs. Third-Party Liability Claims
The legal claims process for construction workers can be especially challenging. You might have a no-fault claim through workers’ comp and or a fault-based claim through the personal injury process (third party liability). When a construction worker is injured on the job, they may have two different avenues for seeking compensation:
- Workers’ compensation claims. The vast majority of construction workers throughout Queens are covered–or should be covered–by workers’ compensation insurance, which is mandatory in our state. Workers’ compensation pays for medical expenses and a portion of a worker’s lost wages when the worker suffers an on-the-job injury – an injury that occurs through the course of employment. By the workers’ compensation system, workers are barred from filing a claim directly against their employer and cannot recover compensation for pain and suffering damages. If you have any questions about the workers’ comp claims process, our Queens, NY construction accident attorneys can help.
- Third-party liability claims. A third-party liability claim is a type of civil action in which the injured worker alleges that their injuries would not have occurred but for the actions of a third party, such as the property owner where an injury occurred. Note that the employee cannot file a claim against their employer – only a third party when appropriate. In a third-party liability claim, the worker does have to prove fault, but can also recover a greater amount of damages. Sometimes, filing both a workers’ compensation claim and a third-party liability claim is possible. If you have any questions about construction accidents and third-party liability claims, our Queens, NY construction injury lawyers are here to help.
If you’re not sure whether or not you are covered under workers’ compensation insurance, whether or not you have a viable third-party claim, or if you have any other questions, please reach out to our law firm directly and we can help you get the answers you need.
What Compensation Can You Recover After a Construction Accident in New York
The amount of compensation that will be available through a construction accident claim depends on many different factors, including the severity of your injuries and the specific circumstances of the case. Through a workers’ compensation claim in New York, an injured construction employee can claim no-fault benefits for all reasonable and necessary medical care as well as for lost wages. Construction workers bringing a fault-based personal injury claim—as well as non-workers bringing a fault-based personal injury claim—can seek financial relief for the full extent of their damages. Monetary compensation may be available for:
- Emergency medical care;
- Other medical bills and related costs;
- Physical therapy and mental health support;
- Lost wages and loss of earning power;
- Pain and suffering & mental distress;
- Permanent scarring or permanent disability; and
- Wrongful death of a family member.
The Role of a Queens Construction Accident Attorney
Construction accident claims are notoriously complex. At the law office of Sullivan & Galleshaw LLP, we help victims and their families seek justice, accountability, and the full and fair financial support that they deserve. When you have been injured on the job in Queens, working with a construction accident attorney should be a top priority. The role of our attorney when working on your case is to:
- Open an investigation to determine the cause of your accident and who’s to blame;
- Advise you on whether you should file a workers’ compensation claim, a third-party liability claim, or both;
- Represent you throughout the claims process, including in reviewing any settlement offer you receive;
- Help you to take action if your workers’ compensation claim is denied;
- Litigate your case if necessary; and
- More – our lawyers will serve you and handle 100 percent of your claim throughout the entire process.
Call Our Queens Construction Accident Lawyers Today
At the law office of Sullivan & Galleshaw LLP, our New York City construction accident attorneys are skilled, solutions-oriented advocates for injured victims and their families. Being in a construction accident can change your life. Not only may you be seriously injured, but you now may also be unable to work and earn an income, providing for yourself and your family. At the law office of Sullivan & Galleshaw LLP, our New York workers’ compensation attorneys care about you and will help you to recover the settlement that you deserve. If you have been hurt at work in a construction accident, reach us today by phone at 718-843-0300 or online to schedule your free consultation. With an office in Queens, we handle construction accident claims throughout New York City.