More often than not, construction sites are hazardous places to be in. This is due to the presence of unstable structures. When construction is ongoing, heavy machinery and electrical components, mixed with extreme heights & falling objects, could easily cause injury to a passerby or construction worker. As such, it’s critical to know whether you can file a personal injury lawsuit in a construction accident.
State and federal governments have put some laws in place to protect the rights of workers hurt in their line of duty. In addition, bystanders may also be involved in construction accidents, and many companies carry liability insurance to care for potential victims of their negligence. However, every party – the company, the head safety officer, worker who caused the problem – may be liable for any negligence on their part. When the injuries sustained are severe and life-threatening, you can expect a fight to recover from the negligent party. Before seeking legal redress, it’s good to familiarize yourself on how legal fault is determined, what damages are available to recover, and how these damages are calculated. For those reasons, the process may be particularly complicated and it is advisable to seek the services of an experienced personal injury attorney.
To make a valid personal injury claim, several factors come into consideration. The most important among them is the proof that more likely than not, the accident was as a result of another person’s negligence. You will need to show that if they took the necessary precautions, the accident would not have happened. When injuries have been sustained, here are the steps to take:
Seek immediate medical attention
Regardless of whether you feel minor or major pain, you should not underestimate the extent of your injuries. In many cases, adrenaline from an injury could mitigate the full symptoms of a concussion, spinal disc herniations, or bone fractures. Seeking proper medical attention is the first step to take after the accident. If you are in serious pain and unable to reach the hospital unaided, request a colleague or passerby to call an ambulance to get you to a qualified medical provider.
Report the injury to your employer
Secondly, report the injury to your employer in writing and most importantly, keep a copy for your records. If the injury occurred while you were on the job, Texas State law allows for 30 working days period to make a formal report to your employer. In case you are hospitalized with severe injuries, it’s advisable that a relative makes the communication to your employer in writing. In return, your employer will make a formal report to the insurance company about your injury. In this case, the employer has only 8 days to notify their insurance company.
The insurer pays or denies your claim
There can only be two eventual outcomes for your claim: either the insurer pays or denies the claim altogether. This is where the services of an experienced personal injury lawyer come into play in order to prove your damages, whether temporary or permanent.
What if the injury was a result of my own negligence?
In isolated cases, a worker may sustain an injury as a result of his or her own negligence. As such, you may wonder whether they can file a personal injury claim. In short, the answer is yes, you are still covered by Texas workers’ compensation law that requires your employer to cover injuries sustained on the job. In most States, construction accident claims do not necessarily require you to prove the contractor’s or company’s liability. This is stipulated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, an agency of the US government under the Department of Labor tasked with the responsibility of ensuring safety at work and a healthy work environment.
Notably, one does not need to sustain sever injuries to file a personal injury lawsuit in a construction accident. Even a seemingly minor injury resulting from a slip or fall may form a basis for the legal suit. If the incident caused measurable harm, your employer is required to make up for the medical bills and pain that they have caused. Reach out to a qualified personal injury lawyer today for more information.