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If you have been involved in a construction accident at work, you can lighten the burden of trying to seek compensation for your injuries by getting an experienced attorney involved in the process. Attorneys help make sure that you are being treated fairly, and even more importantly, negotiate on your behalf so that you don’t have to. Our attorneys at Zinda Law Group may be able to help you with your claim.
What makes Texas Construction Accidents Unique?
Construction sites are filled with potential hazards for employees. However, what makes construction accidents complex is the way workers’ compensation claims interact with personal injury liability, especially in Texas. Despite the complexities of these claims, Zinda Law Group helps workers determine the best path to seek compensation after being injured at their place of work.
Construction accidents differ from other personal injury accidents because construction workers have a much stronger likelihood of being hurt on the job than other professions. Construction workers spend their days in high-risk situations where they are dealing with a lot of moving parts and heavy equipment. This creates an environment that is particularly conducive to getting hurt. Additionally, construction jobs and accidents are unique mostly because, to an extent, they are often preventable at some level. Whether it is the machinery, the training, or the handling of equipment, somebody has the power to lessen the likelihood that someone will get hurt. For example, OSHA says that that fall protection is one of its most violated safety standards.
By providing proper training and making sure workers follow all necessary safety protocols, there is a much better chance that workers can lessen the likelihood of a construction accident at work.
Types of Construction Accidents
Construction accidents and their causes vary. However, there are a few common types of construction accidents. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), there are four main types of construction accidents that may result in serious injury or death. These four scenarios are referred to as “The Fatal Four.” The four types are as follows:
- Falls were responsible for 33.5% of workplace deaths in 2018 according to OSHA
- Being struck by an object accounted for 11% of deaths
- Electrocution caused 8.5% of workplace deaths
- Getting caught between equipment or machines claimed the lives of 5.5% of workers
OSHA estimates that these four types of construction accidents claim the lives of over 400 construction workers every year.
Who is at Fault?
The following is a list of people who could potentially be held liable and at fault for a construction accident, but this list is not exhaustive:
- The construction site owners
- General contractors
- Site managers and/or foremen
- Manufacturers of equipment/machinery
- You, by user error
The cause of the accident often comes down to negligence. This means that someone owed you a duty to act a certain way or to keep the work environment in a certain manner and then they breached this duty somehow. The duty that is owed to you will vary depending on who you are trying to sue. Some parties involved, such as site managers, may have had a duty to keep the construction site to a certain standard or to train you in a specific way. Other parties, such as coworkers, have a duty to act as reasonable people would and not put you in a situation that they know or should know could be dangerous.
How is this Different from a Workers’ Compensation Claim?
Workers’ compensation claims and personal injury claims are two very different types of systems. Although these claims can both come about from workplace accidents, they differ in how they function within the legal world. Every state has workers compensation laws that usually allow someone to recover medical expenses and lost wages after suffering a workplace accident. These damages are a lot more limited than what would maybe be available via a personal injury claim.
In Texas, workers’ compensation is not mandatory for employers. If your employer subscribes to the workers’ compensation program, filing a workers’ comp claim may be your only avenue to seek compensation for medical bills and lost wages. However, if your employer opts not to subscribe to workers’ compensation, you may be able to bring a personal injury lawsuit against them. Personal Injury claims not only allow you to seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses and lost wages, but also may allow you to be covered for non-economic damages. This includes compensation for pain and suffering.
What to Do After a Construction Accident
These five easy steps may help walk you through what you should do if you are involved in a construction accident while at work:
Get Medical Attention
The first thing you should do after getting hurt is to seek medical attention. You need to know what your injuries are, how bad they are, and what you can do to treat them. Additionally, it is important to create a medical record that can be used as evidence when seeking compensation for your injuries.
Inform Your Supervisor
Although it may not seem important at the moment, always let your superiors know that you have been injured at work. In the early stages of your injury, you probably aren’t thinking too heavily about liability, but when it becomes an issue, you don’t want anyone saying that you aren’t being truthful. Letting the right people know about what happened as soon as it happens will help show you are being honest about what occurred.
Document Your Injuries
Consider documenting your injuries. You want evidence of what your injuries were like right after they happened. Once your injuries begin to heal or are treated, they may no longer look as bad as they may have originally been. It’s important to have an accurate depiction of how everything was when the accident happened.
Take Note of Key Witnesses
It can never hurt to have some witnesses on your side or to provide more information. Take note of anyone who saw the accident and may help corroborate your claim.
Speak to an Experienced Attorney
You should also speak with an attorney who has experience with construction accidents. An attorney may help make sure you know the value of your claim and are not being taken advantage of by insurance companies.
Read More: Why Hiring a Lawyer Will Help Your Case
Is there a Time Limit to File my Claim?
Each state places a time limit on when victims may file a legal claim, known as the statute of limitations. Each state is unique, but Texas law places a two-year time limit on a victim’s ability to file a personal injury claim and a one-year limit on workers’ compensation claims.
Because construction accident claims can be complicated, it is in your best interest to speak with an attorney in your area right away to ensure that you do not miss the statute of limitations. An attorney may help you determine what type of claim you have and ensure that your lawsuit is filed on time.
How Zinda Law Group may Help
Regardless of whether your claim is simple, complicated, or somewhere in between, you should consult with an attorney right away. Lawsuits can be complex and burdensome without having a dedicated Texas construction accident lawyer by your side. Don’t make it harder on yourself by trying to go through this process alone. Our attorneys at Zinda Law Group have the experience to guide you through the legal process, make recommendations, negotiate with the involved parties, and help advise you on important legal decisions. Having an experienced Texas attorney may improve your chances of being able to seek the maximum compensation you may be entitled to for your injuries.
At Zinda Law Group we believe that quality representation should be available to everyone. That is why we work on a contingency fee basis. You don’t owe us anything unless we win your case. Call our Texas construction accident lawyers today at (800) 863-5312 for a free consultation.
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