If you or a loved one has suffered an injury on the job in construction, the Boston construction accident lawyers at Sweeney Merrigan Law, LLP can help. We understand the risks of this industry and know how to pursue financial damages from at-fault parties. We may be able to help your family obtain compensation through a workers’ compensation claim or injury lawsuit. Request a free consultation today to ask specific questions about your case.
Statistics from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that the construction industry is one of the most dangerous. In 2014, of the 4,251 worker fatalities, the construction industry reported 874 fatalities, meaning that one in five worker deaths were in the construction industry. Furthermore, its estimated that over a 45 year career, a construction worker has a 75% chance of experiencing a disabling injury and a 1-200 chance of being fatally injured.
Hiring a construction accident lawyer in Boston can protect your rights during a workers’ compensation insurance claim and/or personal injury lawsuit. Your lawyer will make sure no one takes advantage of you during the claims process. Your attorney will evaluate your claim honestly and fight for fair compensation through all available outlets. You can focus on your physical recovery while your construction accident lawyer handles the complex legwork of your claim for you.
Although the number of deaths may seem high, it is not surprising when considered in light of the vast number of hazards that construction workers face every day. Construction sites are dangerous places due to the presence of many workers, heavy equipment, and power tools. To add to the danger, workers are often perched high above the ground on scaffolding or ladders. The inherently unsafe nature of construction work results in many injuries and deaths each year, many of which are the result of:
The list of potential hazards is virtually endless. Unfortunately, many accidents are preventable and occur because of improper employee training or a failure to follow safety regulations. According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, eliminating the “Fatal Four” – falls, electrocution, struck by object, and caught-in/between – would save 508 workers’ lives in America per year.
A construction worker in Boston could sustain a range of personal injuries on the job. The type and severity of the injury will depend on the facts of the accident. The fatal four in construction often cause deadly injuries to the head, brain, neck and spinal cord. An injury to any part of the body, however, could cause long-term disability.
Regardless of your diagnosis, consider the option of filing a lawsuit. Discuss your injuries and rights with a personal injury lawyer. The more serious your injuries, the more your case could be worth. Catastrophic injuries that leave you or a loved one with a permanent disability, for example, may require lawsuits for full compensation.
Determining which party is at fault in a construction accident can be complicated. There are usually multiple companies employed on a single construction site, each using different equipment and performing different tasks. The responsible party may be:
It often happens that multiple parties are responsible for construction accidents. This means that recovering damages for an accident can be complicated because each party must be pursued separately. Dealing with numerous insurance companies increases the complexity of construction claims as each party seeks to shift responsibility. It’s also important to note here the difference between workers’ compensation claims and third party personal injury claims. Although you may receive benefits for medical expenses and lost income via workers’ compensation benefits, pain and suffering and other loses are only available through a third party personal injury claim. Massachusetts law dictates that you may not file a lawsuit against your employer, but speak with your workers’ compensation attorney to see if there are other parties to blame from whom you can seek damages.
Regardless of how or why a construction site accident happens, injured employees will be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits in Massachusetts. These benefits can cover 100% of the costs of medical bills and some of a victim’s lost wages. Yet workers’ compensation might not be the victim’s only outlet for financial recovery. Chapter 152, Section 15, of Massachusetts’ General Laws states that if someone other than the employer caused the injury, the employee can proceed to enforce the liability of the at-fault party.
If the employee secures compensation for the liability of someone other than the employer, the insurance company will be eligible for reimbursement through the lawsuit. The employee may keep any excess compensation remaining after the insurance company has satisfied its right to recover the benefits it paid. Exactly what types of compensation this entails the injured worker to collect depends on the situation. State courts do not limit the meaning of the word injury in Section 15 of the law.
A successful personal injury claim for a construction site accident could result in payment for various economic and noneconomic losses. An injured worker could collect damages for pain and suffering, past medical expenses, foreseeable medical costs in the future, missed wages and even punitive damages. The courts reserve punitive damage awards for cases involving gross negligence or wanton disregard. Speak to a Boston construction accident attorney to find out what your unique case could be worth.
Time is of the essence for construction claims; evidence disappears and memories fade. Valuable evidence is lost simply through the passage of time. If you have been injured on a construction site, it is important to speak with an attorney as soon as possible following the incident. Contact our team of Boston construction accident lawyers today for a free consultation and see how we can help restore your health and peace of mind.