Construction Accident Lawyers in El Paso
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Construction sites are some of the most dangerous places to work in the United States. Each year, thousands of injuries occur in a construction zone, and hurt employees are often left facing not only physical pain but also severe financial hardship due to medical bills and missing work.
Fortunately, you do not have to face this difficult time alone.
The construction accident attorneys at Zinda Law Group El Paso have the knowledge and resources necessary to help you seek compensation for all the ways your injuries have cost you. And as one of our clients, you will pay nothing unless we win your construction injury case.
What Do I Need To File A Claim?
The laws regarding construction accidents can be difficult to navigate, as construction companies often hire multiple contractors to insulate themselves from liability in case of accidents, and this can make pursuing a claim confusing without an attorney to help negotiate the legal labyrinth companies often use to minimize their exposure to damage claims.
If you are injured while working at a construction site, you should consult an attorney to determine the proper course of action in your case. Depending on the nature of the accident, who is at fault, and the availability of workers' compensation coverage offered by your employer, you may be able to sue for damages suffered in a construction accident.
If you are involved in a construction accident, be sure to document everything, collect any available police reports, statements from any witnesses, pictures of your injury and the accident scene, all of your medical records, any reports from insurance companies, and any other documentation related to the construction accident. This documentation will be crucial as your El Paso construction accident lawyer seeks compensation for your injuries.
Who Can I Sue?
In Texas, there are certain restrictions on who can be sued after a construction accident. If your employer maintains Workers’ Compensation Insurance, you will likely be unable to sue your employer. Instead, you will only be able to make claims through the employer’s insurance and must abide by the restrictions it may impose.
However, if you believe you were injured through the negligence of a third party, such as another contractor on site, you may be able to make a claim against them for damages, in addition to your workers' compensation benefits, though you will need to be able to prove negligence on their part. Also, any negligence on your part can impact any damages awarded in this kind of suit.
If your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, you may be able to sue your employer for damages, if negligence on their part contributed to the accident. You may also be able to sue the equipment manufacturer if defective machinery or tools caused your injuries. Depending on the specifics of your accident, the property owner or architect may also be liable in some cases.
Speak with a lawyer today to help understand your legal position and who to sue.
How To File A Claim
1. Medical Attention
If you have been injured in a construction accident, you should visit a doctor to have your injuries diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. As well as receiving treatment for your injuries, this provides valuable documentation of your injuries and their treatment.
You should seek out any coworkers or others that may have witnessed the accident and get their contact information.
3. Record the Accident
Take pictures of the area the accident occurred, as well as any equipment that may have been involved in the accident, as soon as possible after the accident occurs. This will help provide evidence of the details of the accident, such as how and why it occurred. You should also be careful to keep any documentation and evidence regarding your injuries, including medical bills, accident reports, photos, and witness statements.
4. Report the Accident
Report the accident to your employer or site-foreman. Ensure that your supervisor or foreman creates an official report as soon as possible.
5. File an Incident Report
File an incident report with any applicable government agencies, such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
6. Workers Compensation
File a claim under your employer’s worker’s comp insurance, if available to you.
7. Speak with a Lawyer
Seeking a settlement for construction-related accidents can be a difficult process. You should consult a construction accident injury attorney. A construction accident injury attorney can investigate your case, assist in filing a workers’ compensation claim or help you in pursuing a personal injury lawsuit, and help you to seek a settlement.
Legal Time Limits
In Texas, there are legal time limits on how long a person has to file a claim. These time limits are called the ‘statute of limitations.' The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Texas is two years from the date of the accident, though in some specific cases, it may be two years from the date that you become aware of the injury, as you may be unable to detect some injuries immediately.
However, it is important to consult an attorney as soon as possible after an accident, as this ensures that your attorney will be able to gather evidence and facts while they are most readily available as well as file your claim within the legal timeframe.
How Compensation Is Calculated
As in most personal injury cases, compensation falls into two categories, economic compensation, and non-economic compensation.
Economic Compensation can include:
Medical damages include the cost of doctor visits, hospital stays, treatment, medication, occupational therapy, and any other costs associated with the diagnosis and treatment of any injuries you may have suffered as a result of the construction accident.
Loss of Income
Loss of income damages covers any lost income or wages due to an inability to work as a result of your injuries from an accident, including time spent in the hospital as well as time spent recuperating.
Diminished Earning Capacity
You may be able to file for diminished earning capacity damages if your injuries from the construction accident have left you unable to return to work and perform your duties
If a loved one died as a result of a construction accident, you may be able to recover lost household earning potential.
Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering damages are based on the physical and mental anguish you may have suffered due to an accident. Every case is different, and different injuries may result in varying pain and suffering damages being awarded. A broken rib may result in a different award than a burn leaving permanent scarring, or an injury resulting in the loss of a limb.
If a loved one died as a result of an accident, you may be able to claim loss of consortium or wrongful death damages, which are awarded to help cope with the emotional trauma associated with the loss of a loved one.
In the state of Texas, employers are not required to, but have the option to, subscribe to workers’ compensation insurance plans. If your employer does possess workers’ compensation insurance, you will be unable to sue your employer in most cases, and any claims must be made through the workers’ compensation insurance. The workers’ compensation insurance may require you to use certain doctors within their coverage network and limit damages that can be sought by the employee. By subscribing to workers’ compensation insurance, employers avoid being held responsible for negligence, while employees do not have to prove negligence in order to file a claim.
When Can I Sue Outside Of Workers Compensation?
You may still be able to sue in order to pursue damages in addition to your workers' compensation claim if you believe your accident was caused by a third party acting in a negligent manner, such as an employee of a different contractor, property owner, architect, or machinery manufacturer.
To make such a claim, you must be able to prove the third party acted in a negligent manner that caused your accident. This can include behavior such as disregarding safety rules, acting in an unsafe manner, failing to take proper precautions when using machinery, not paying adequate attention to tasks, or faulty product liability. However, your own contributory negligence in the accident, if applicable, can also impact your claim in such a suit.
Finally, if your employer does not subscribe to workers’ compensation insurance, you may be able to sue them in order to seek damages related to injuries suffered in a construction accident.
Common Construction AccidentsCommon construction accidents include:
- Being struck by falling objects
- Being caught between two objects
- Chemical ExposureMachinery or tool malfunctions, due to either poor maintenance or defect
- Improper or negligent use of machinery or tools by other employees
Proving Employer Negligence
When filing suit against an employer that is liable for damages caused by on the job accidents, negligence by the employer must be proven. An employer may have behaved in a negligent manner if one or more of the following behaviors led to your accident:
- Safety standards and requirements were not met or enforced
- Safety gear, such as helmets, harnesses, respirators, etc. were not provided or available
- Tools and machinery were not properly maintained
- Inadequate machine guards
- Allowing poorly trained or untrained employees to operate tools or equipment
- Improperly labeled chemicals
- OSHA Violations
- Safety gear was improperly or poorly maintained
- Other employees were allowed to behave in an unsafe manner, or contrary to safety regulations
Your Rights If Injured on a Construction Site
If you are injured on a construction site, you may have right to one or more of three main methods of claiming damages:
In Texas, workers’ compensation is optional, but if your employer has subscribed to workers’ compensation insurance, you have the right to make a claim in the event of a workplace accident, with no need to prove negligence, though you may be unable to sue your employer or hold them responsible for the accident.
Personal Injury Lawsuit
If your employer does not subscribe to workers’ compensation insurance, or if a third party contributed to your accident through negligence, you may be able to pursue a personal injury lawsuit. Negligence must be proven in this case.
Products Liability Lawsuit
If you were injured by a defective or malfunctioning tool or machine, you may be able to file a products liability lawsuit against the manufacturer of the tool or machine at fault for your accident.
Depending on the specifics of your case, there may also be other avenues to pursue a claim for damages after a construction site accident, such as a claim against the property owner or architect.
OUR EL PASO CONSTRUCTION ACCIDENT LAWYERS CAN HELP
If you or a loved one was harmed on a construction site from someone else's negligence, you may be entitled to financial compensation. The construction injury lawyers at Zinda Law Group can help you seek the maximum payout for your injuries or loss.
To get started with your claim, call Zinda Law Group at (888) 281-6991 to receive your free consultation with our experienced construction accident attorneys.
Meetings with lawyers are available by appointment only.