Most of the people who are injured in a construction accident are working on-site. Yet construction accidents are more simple than mere workers compensation cases. This is because every construction site involves multiple parties.
For example, imagine that you’re a building inspector visiting a site to conduct a safety sweep. When you get injured, who covers it? Workers compensation, because you were on the job? The site owner who failed to correct a hazardous condition on the property? How about the company that’s providing the actual construction workers, or the architects who designed the building? If you were working on the road and a driver hit you, then how about the at-fault driver?
Even the manufacturers of the crane or the bulldozer could have a hand in causing your accident.
In many construction accident cases there will be two cases at once. One will be a workers compensation case. The other will be a personal injury case against the party who actually caused the injury.
The differences between these case types is important. On workers comp, your medical bills are paid. You also get ⅔ of your average weekly wage. That means all of your losses are not covered. You also won’t get any money for pain and suffering.
In a personal injury case, 100% of your lost wages will be covered. If, as is so often the case, your accident injured you to a degree that prevents you from ever working again, then you are compensated for your loss of earning capacity too, in some amount that is based on projections of what you would have made over the course of the rest of your working life but for the construction accident.
In addition, you will receive compensation for types of care that employers and workers compensation insurance often actively try to prevent you from getting, such as better prosthetics, physical therapy, chiropractic care, and psychological care. You will be compensated for your pain and suffering, too.
These two case types can work together in complex ways. For example once your personal injury settlement gets paid a portion of that settlement may be paid back to the workers compensation carrier, as you do not get to “double dip.” You’d get ⅓ of your lost wages back but the 2/3rds that were already paid out under workers compensation wouldn’t get paid to you a second time. You’ve already received that money. Instead the insurance company that paid it could get paid.
Nevertheless you will nearly always come out ahead if you work with an attorney who has the skill and expertise to hold all responsible parties accountable for your accident.
In addition, New York law allows employees to sue employers in personal injury cases if their managers failed to provide adequate protection from hazards for their working, or failed to handle their scaffolding correctly.
Reach out to Miller, Montiel, & Strano today to get a free consultation. We have won millions of dollars for our construction accident clients. There’s a good chance we can help you, too.