Construction Accident And Injury Frequently Asked Questions

Many accident victims are overwhelmed by their injuries, and the thought of a legal case can seem daunting. At Hofmann & Schweitzer, our legal team understands these feelings, and we’ve compiled our thoughts on many common worries here to help you get started finding the answers you need to protect yourself and your family. If you’ve been hurt in a construction, maritime, or railroad accident, browse our FAQs today.

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  • Could I have a third-party claim if I suffered an electric shock on a construction site?

    Electrocution SignIt depends on who is responsible for your injury. Before you begin a third-party claim, you need to find out why you were hurt and who was responsible for the dangerous condition that caused your electric shock injury.

    How Electric Shocks Happen on Construction Sites

    Electricians and other construction workers are often exposed to electric wires, boxes, and transformers that are in various stages of installation. When electric accidents occur, they frequently happen because:

    • Wiring is not properly grounded yet
    • Wiring is exposed
    • Something falls on wiring
    • Workers come into contact with overhead wires

    Any of these situations can result in a severe injury.

    Third Parties Are Liable for Some Electric Shock Injuries

    If someone other than your employer caused the unsafe condition that led to your electric shock, then you may file a third-party lawsuit. In some cases, the following parties may not employ you but may cause your injury:

    • Contractors
    • Electricians
    • Property owners
    • Wiring and switch manufacturers
    • Equipment manufacturers

    A successful third-party lawsuit may allow you to recover for all of your injuries.

    Get the Recovery You Deserve After an Electric Shock Injury

    Not all electric shocks are the same. The severity of an electric shock injury depends on the voltage exposure, the length of time you were exposed to electricity, your overall health condition, and other factors. Your injuries may include:

    • Loss of consciousness
    • Muscle spasms
    • Numbness and tingling
    • Respiratory issues
    • Headaches
    • Vision and hearing problems
    • Burns
    • Seizures
    • Heart issues
    • Organ damage
    • Compartment syndrome

    Your medical conditions may significantly interfere with your life and continue for a long time. A third-party lawsuit can help you recover for your physical pain, emotional suffering, and other damages.

    To learn more, please contact our experienced New York City construction accident lawyers for a free, no-obligation consultation. We will help you pursue every possible recovery so that you do not have to suffer a financial loss in addition to your pain and suffering.

     

  • Can I sue a hiring company for causing a construction accident?

    construction attorney near meConstruction employees can work for a variety of employers throughout the course of their careers. Some may work multiple part-time jobs, while others work for a single employer but are occasionally sent out to help another company perform work. In order to ensure workers have fast access to workers’ compensation benefits after a construction injury, New York State relies on the “special employment” rule for borrowed workers.

    The “special employment” doctrine, sometimes called the “borrowed servant” doctrine, says that if you are employed by Company X, but are lent to Company Y and suffer an injury due to Company Y’s negligence, you can’t sue Company Y as long as Company X has provided you with your workers’ compensation benefits. However, there may be situations where you could have a valid claim against Company Y.

    When an Alternate Employer May Be Liable for a NY Construction Injury

    While any third-party company could share liability for worksite injuries, you will need to determine whether the state’s “special employment” doctrine applies. In general, if the third-party company had the same degree of control over your work as your employer, you will likely be considered a “borrowed servant.”

    On the other hand, you may have a claim if your injury was caused by:

    • A negligent temp agency. There could be many different negligent parties working on a construction site at once, including temporary workers employed by a hiring agency. These staffing companies could be liable for inadequate training or failing to perform background checks on their temp workers.
    • A negligent coworker’s employer. If you were injured on Company Y’s worksite by a worker who was sent by a different employer (Company Z), liability could fall on Company Z if they did not have proper indemnity in their contract with Company Y.
    • A negligent subcontractor or construction agency. In order to hold a third party legally responsible in an injury claim, you will still have to show that the negligent person owed you a duty of care, failed to provide an adequate level of care, and that their breach of this duty directly caused your injury.

    Contact Experienced NYC Construction Attorneys

    Our New York construction injury lawyers can calculate the full compensation you are owed, and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.

     

  • Should I claim workers' compensation or file a work injury lawsuit?

    Workers' Compensation Computer Screen With Gavel and Scales of JusticeIf you were injured on a job site, one of the first things you should do is file for workers' compensation for your construction injury. As a construction employee in the State of New York, you are guaranteed benefits for your lost wages and medical benefits after you are hurt at work. However, if someone other than the employer caused your injury, you could also be eligible to file an injury lawsuit against the negligent party.

    You May Collect Workers' Compensation While Filing a Work Injury Lawsuit

    State workers' compensation laws only prohibit you from suing an employer after a construction site injury. They do not prevent you from filing suit against third parties, such as a negligent subcontractor or building site owner. It may even be in your best interest to pursue both workers' compensation claims and a third-party lawsuit, as workers' compensation benefits only provide limited payment for employee losses.

    On the other hand, there are many types of damages available in third-party claims, such as:

    • Lost future wages. Workers' compensation offers long-term disability benefits after an injury, but these may fall short of the potential salary you might have earned in your lifetime had your career not been cut short.
    • Emotional distress. A severe physical injury can cause added stress, psychological trauma, and bouts of depression and anxiety about the future. A third party may be compelled to compensate you for your mental and emotional suffering.
    • Pain and suffering. Some injuries are especially heinous, causing continual pain and inconvenience that robs the victim of a normal life. Workers who are unable to do the things they once enjoyed, are unable to have children, cannot live independently, or have lost a loved one may be owed significant compensation as a result.

    Our construction accident attorneys can tell you who could be liable for your pain and suffering and calculate the full compensation you are owed—and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You're Not Alone.

     

  • Do I need a lawyer to file a third-party claim?

    Top NYC construction attorneys

    Compensation in third-party construction injury cases is awarded in addition to workers’ compensation benefits, allowing you to collect full value for your injuries. However, they can be difficult to prove and hard to negotiate in settlement talks, so you should definitely have an attorney on your side.

    Your Lawyer Is Vital in a Third Party Construction Injury Claim

    A third-party claim is a type of lawsuit filed against someone other than an employer whose negligence played a part in your injuries. In construction site accidents, third parties could include general contractors, sub-contractors, equipment operators, property owners, or the manufacturers of defective equipment.

    Our attorneys can be invaluable after a construction site injury when it comes to:

    • Getting you the benefit payments you need to survive. New York provides injured workers with guaranteed benefits under workers’ compensation after a construction site injury. You do not have to file a lawsuit or prove that anyone was negligent in order to collect workers’ compensation. However, you will have to meet certain filing and injury reporting deadlines in order to receive payment. We can ensure that you receive your rightful benefits while you are unable to work after an injury on the job.
    • Explaining your rights and options. New York construction is governed by a mix of federal, state, and local statutes. We can determine your rights under both U.S. and NY Labor Laws to find the best way forward for your case.
    • Discovering who was at fault. Construction sites are bustling workplaces, with the potential for numerous people to be named in third-party cases. In addition, an injured construction worker may even be able to directly sue an employer for a work-related injury in New York if the employer was willfully or recklessly negligent, attacked the employee physically, or failed to carry workers’ compensation insurance.
    • Negotiating on your behalf. Workers’ compensation may not be enough to adequately compensate you for your medical expenses, lost wages, and permanent disability. We can calculate your past and future losses, deal with insurance companies and medical bill collectors, and prevent you from saying or doing anything to hurt your claim.

    Contact Top NYC Construction Accident Attorneys Today

    Our construction accident attorneys work hard to get you everything you are entitled to after an injury. We offer free, no-obligation consultations for construction accident victims, allowing you to learn your options and next steps at no cost to you. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.

     

  • Can I get pain and suffering in my construction accident case?

    Top NYC construction attorneys

    As a construction employee, you are guaranteed benefits under workers’ compensation after a construction site injury. While these benefits cover lost wages, medical bills, and partial or total disability payments, they do not pay workers for their pain and suffering. In order to recover these damages, you will have to pursue a third-party claim against someone other than your employer.

    Construction Injury Complications That May Qualify for Pain and Suffering

    The workers’ compensation system prevents employees from suing their employers after an injury, but allows employees to file lawsuits against third parties whose actions contributed to the injury. Third parties such as the manufacturer of a defective machine part, a negligent subcontractor, or an inspector who failed to identify a serious safety hazard could be liable for all losses related to the injury—including pain and suffering.

    While every injury causes some degree of pain or suffering, this category of damages is meant to compensate victims whose conditions have resulted in:

    • Psychological damages. Physical injuries can result in a wide range of debilitating mental and emotional symptoms, including mood swings, depression, sleep disturbances, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
    • Uncontrollable pain. Victims may be owed additional compensation for extreme physical pain and discomfort after the injury, during recovery, and in the future. Since pain is subjective, a doctor’s testimony could demonstrate the extent of the victim’s suffering and the limitations expected in the future.
    • Loss of enjoyment of life. A person may be unable to do the things they once enjoyed due to permanent consequences of the injury, such as extensive scarring, amputation of a leg or hand, sexual dysfunction, blindness, or loss of independence.

    Contact Top NYC Contstruction Attorneys Today

    Our construction accident attorneys can tell you who could be liable for your pain and suffering and calculate the full compensation you are owed—and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.

     

  • How do I start a third-party construction accident claim?

    Top NYC construction lawyers

    Construction sites are active workplaces that can involve employees from many different companies, unions, or government agencies. Construction crews often work shoulder-to-shoulder with workers under the employ of multiple contractors, making it difficult to know which party’s actions directly led to an injury. Our construction accident attorneys work diligently to determine the at-fault party, helping you recover all you are owed for your economic losses and pain and suffering.

    What to Expect in Your Third-Party Construction Accident Claim

    A third-party work injury claim is a civil lawsuit against someone other than your employer. This could be anyone on the site the day of the injury, a negligent subcontractor, the manufacturer of a defective product, or an owner who failed to make the site safe for workers.

    When you meet with us, we will:

    • Listen to your story and address your immediate concerns. It can take time to get you all that you are owed for your injury. We can discuss ways to pay bills while your case is pending, including filing for workers’ compensation, as well as protecting you from employer retaliation.
    • Investigate on your behalf. Workers are often too injured to collect evidence after an accident on the job. Unfortunately, a lot of evidence can be lost in the days and weeks after the incident. We will take steps to prevent the destruction of evidence, find out who was in charge of the location at the time of the accident, and discover what was happening on the site leading up to your injury.
    • Take legal matters off your plate. Your chief concern should be your own well-being. While you concentrate on your recovery, our team will examine all possible avenues of compensation based on the evidence we have collected, including determining the proper third-party to name in the lawsuit.
    • Fight for you until you get adequate compensation. Once our investigation is complete, we contact the liable party and file insurance claims to demand a fair payment for your suffering. If the at-fault party or insurer is unwilling to negotiate a fair settlement, our trial attorneys will prepare to take your case to court.

    Contact Top New York City Construction Attorneys Today

    Our attorneys will work to get you the compensation you are owed, and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.

     

  • My loved one died while working on a construction site. Could I have a third party claim?

    Injured Construction Worker on the Side of the RoadThe loss of a family member is not only tragic—it can cause financial hardship for survivors for years into the future. While there are benefits available under workers’ compensation, they may fall far short of what a family needs to survive. For this reason, it is always worth investigating whether you could recover through a third-party claim after a relative is killed in a construction accident.

    Compensation for Families After a Fatal Construction Site Accident

    Construction workers are protected by many different safety and liability laws when performing work in New York City. They even have the right to sue their employers and coworkers in cases of grave injury—something that is usually prohibited under workers’ compensation law. In cases of fatal injury, the right to file a lawsuit to recover medical costs, funeral expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering passes to the worker’s family.

    Unfortunately, survivors are often overwhelmed by grief and unaware of what they are entitled to under the law. That is why our New York construction accident attorneys do everything we can to prevent you from being taken advantage of in your time of need.

    We help you:

    • Claim your workers’ compensation benefits. You and your family are entitled to death benefits under workers’ compensation law even if you file an injury lawsuit.
    • Identify who was responsible. Subcontractors, property owners, equipment manufacturers, and other third parties whose negligence causes an injury on the job could all be sued after a wrongful death. We perform a thorough investigation to get to the true cause of the accident and hold every negligent party accountable.
    • Meet required deadlines and filing requirements. Workers’ compensation claims and wrongful death claims have specific procedural requirements, and we ensure all paperwork is complete to preserve your right to recovery.
    • Deal with the employer and insurance company on your behalf. Throughout the course of your claim, the employer’s insurance company will do everything it can to pay you as little as possible. We negotiate with the company on your behalf, getting you what you deserve for your loss.

    Our attorneys will work to get you the compensation you are owed, and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.

     

  • How can I tell if my construction injury was caused by negligent hiring?

    Construction Worker Being Hired on as an EmployeeConstruction sites are dangerous enough without employees worrying if their coworkers are up to the demands of the job. Workers rely on their teammates for everything to lifting heavy loads to pulling them to safety in an emergency—and if a fellow employee is unfit for his position, workers can suffer severe injury or even death. If you or someone you know has been injured due to the negligent hiring by an employer, our construction injury attorneys can help you recover.

    Hiring Negligence Causes Injuries on Construction Sites

    Employers are required to perform due diligence (a reasonable level of care) when hiring new employees to perform construction work. Due diligence can include checking an applicant’s references, ensuring the employee has the right training, and otherwise make reasonably sure a new hire will not cause harm to others. A failure to adequately investigate a potential employee can not only put other employees and the public at risk, it can open the employer up to negligence claims. 

    Employers may be held liable for injuries caused by employees who:

    • Were not properly trained for the position held
    • Did not have enough work experience
    • Had a past track record of violent behavior or abuse of authority
    • Were the subject of reports or concerns to the employer that were not properly investigated
    • Were promoted past their level of training or experience
    • Had a history of drug or alcohol abuse and caused injury due to intoxication on the job
    • Did not have the proper licensing or credentials to perform the work that led to injury
    • Did not have adequate safety training to minimize worksite risks
    • Did not meet legal requirements for employment or the position held
    • Were kept employed (or in a certain position) despite repeated warnings of improper conduct

    If you’ve been hurt on a New York construction site, our experienced attorneys can determine if you could collect pain and suffering compensation through a third-party claim—and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.

     

  • What are the most common causes of broken bones in construction work?

    Construction Worker With a Broken LegConstruction sites are inherently dangerous places, with workers facing the threat of serious injury every time they enter the job site. A broken bone may seem like a relatively minor injury in the construction industry, but fractures can result in a wide range of consequences for an accident victim. Unfortunately, the majority of construction fracture injuries require medical intervention, cause months or years of recovery, and can even result in death.

    Common Causes of Bone Fractures on Construction Sites

    Like many injuries, a broken bone can cause complications long after the initial injury has healed. Victims may need surgical insertion of pins, plates, or screws to stabilize the bone, causing lifting restrictions or osteoarthritis that can force the employee to leave the construction trade. If you have suffered a significant loss of income due to a bone fracture, you may need the help of a construction injury attorney to get you all that you are owed.

    The most common causes of bone fractures in the construction industry include:

    • Falls. Falls from heights on construction sites are a leading cause of broken bones, including shattered ribs that cause internal bleeding or spinal fractures that cause long-term disability. Even a trip or slip can cause a fracture in the wrist or ankle, requiring time off work and causing limited mobility.
    • Falling objects. Roofing materials, tools, masonry, and other objects can easily fall from upper levels onto workers below, causing skull fractures that require reconstructive surgery, extended rehabilitation, and sometimes future surgeries.
    • Machinery accidents. Unguarded machinery or malfunctioning power tools can result in compound fractures—broken bones that penetrate through the skin and open the body to potential infection.
    • Explosions. A sudden fire or explosion can not only cause multiple fractures, it may be an indication that the construction site was negligently maintained or was in violation of federal or state safety regulations. 

    If you’ve been hurt on a New York construction site, our experienced attorneys can help you obtain workers’ compensation benefits and determine if you could collect pain and suffering through a third party claim—and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.

     

  • Will workers’ compensation pay for PTSD related to a construction injury?

    PTSD Text With Construction ToolsAlthough post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is commonly associated with soldiers in combat situations, the condition can affect anyone who has been in through a traumatic event. An injury on a construction site could have a significant impact on an employee’s mental state, and New York workers’ compensation allows workers to collect benefits for PTSD. However, mental health claims are some of the most difficult claims to prove, and it may take the help of an experienced construction injury attorney to get you the benefits you are owed.

    Construction Workers May Be Owed Compensation for PTSD

    Construction employees with PTSD may need extended time away from work, psychological treatment (including therapy and medications), and cognitive retraining to avoid response to triggering aspects of daily life. The loud noises, sudden shouts and bangs, and other hazards on a construction site may make it impossible for the employee to focus or perform even light-duty work. Workers’ compensation benefits can provide payment for lost wages, coverage of all medical treatment related to the PTSD, and disability benefits for permanent mental health impairment. 

    New York workers’ compensation benefits may cover PTSD:

    • With a physical injury. A worker may suffer PTSD after a serious accident that caused painful or debilitating physical injuries. These employees may qualify for workers’ compensation benefits for the cost of the physical injuries, as well as the emotional effects of the trauma that can last for many years after the accident.
    • As a standalone condition. A worker can suffer PTSD without sustaining a physical injury, such as from the trauma of witnessing an accident on the job site. The sight of a fellow worker falling from a building or losing an arm on an unguarded machine could form the basis of a workers’ compensation claim for PTSD.

    If you’ve been hurt on a New York construction site, our attorneys can help you obtain workers’ compensation benefits and determine if you could collect pain and suffering through a third party claim—and we do not collect any fees until after your case is won. Simply fill out our quick online contact form or call (800) 362-9329 to speak with a lawyer at Hofmann & Schweitzer today, or read through our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.