NYC Construction Accident Lawyer

Sakkas Cahn & Weiss / NYC Construction Accident Lawyer

At Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP, we understand the inherent risks and dangers associated with the construction industry in New York City. Construction workers face some of the most hazardous working conditions, and accidents can result in severe injuries or even fatalities. As a leading NYC construction accident law firm, we are dedicated to providing aggressive legal representation to injured construction workers and their families. Contact us today for a FREE consultation.

What Constitutes a Construction Accident in New York?

NYC Construction Accident Lawyer

In New York, a construction accident refers to any injury or fatality that occurs as a result of construction work. These accidents can arise from various scenarios due to the inherently dangerous nature of construction sites. Understanding what constitutes a construction accident can help workers and their families recognize when they might have a legal claim. Here are some common types of incidents and factors that are considered construction accidents in New York:

Common Types of Construction Accidents

  • Falls: One of the most frequent causes of injuries on construction sites, falls can occur from scaffolding, ladders, roofs, or any elevated structure.
  • Falling Objects: Workers can be injured by tools, building materials, or debris falling from above.
  • Electrocutions: These accidents occur due to contact with exposed wiring, power lines, or electrical components.
  • Machinery Accidents: Injuries resulting from the operation of heavy machinery such as cranes, bulldozers, forklifts, and excavators.
  • Trench Collapses: Accidents that happen when a trench or excavation site collapses, trapping or crushing workers.
  • Fires and Explosions: Often caused by improper handling or storage of flammable materials or by accidents involving gas lines.
  • Overexertion and Heat Stress: Caused by physically demanding work often performed in extreme weather conditions.

Legal Criteria for Construction Accidents

  • Negligence: Many construction accidents occur due to negligence, where safety protocols are not properly followed. This could be due to the actions of a contractor, subcontractor, or another third party.
  • Violation of Safety Regulations: The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and New York State have specific regulations designed to protect construction workers. Violations of these regulations can be a basis for claims.
  • Labor Law Protections: New York’s labor laws, especially Sections 240 and 241, provide specific protections for construction workers, focusing on safety requirements for scaffold use, fall protection, and the safe handling of materials.

When to Pursue a Legal Claim

If you are involved in a construction accident, you might have a legal claim if:

  • There was a breach of safety regulations or standards.
  • You were injured due to the negligence or misconduct of another party.
  • Your employer failed to provide adequate safety equipment or training.

It is crucial for construction workers and their families to understand these criteria because construction sites are some of the most hazardous work environments. If an accident occurs under circumstances that suggest negligence or a breach of statutory duties, the injured worker or their family may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Given the complexities of construction accident claims in New York, consulting with a personal injury lawyer who has experience in construction accidents is often essential. An attorney can help navigate the legal process, identify liable parties, and ensure that the injured worker receives all the compensation they are entitled to under the law.

How a Construction Accident Lawyer Can Help

As a law firm with experience in construction accidents, Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP is deeply committed to supporting injured construction workers and their families in New York City. Understanding the complexities and challenges of construction accident claims is crucial for effective legal representation. Here’s how our skilled construction accident lawyers can assist clients through the legal process:

In-depth Investigation

Our team conducts thorough investigations to determine the exact cause of the accident and to identify all potential liable parties. This involves:

  • Gathering and analyzing accident reports, medical records, and safety audits.
  • Interviewing witnesses and consulting with industry experts.
  • Reviewing workplace safety protocols and compliance records.

Experience in New York Construction Laws

We are proficient in New York’s specific construction laws, including Labor Law Sections 240 and 241, which provide protections beyond those in many other jurisdictions. Our legal experience ensures that every avenue for compensation is explored, including:

  • Claims under workers’ compensation.
  • Third-party claims against contractors, subcontractors, equipment manufacturers, and others.
  • Direct claims against employers for violations of state labor laws.

Maximizing Compensation

Our attorneys are dedicated to securing the maximum compensation for our clients, which can cover:

  • Medical expenses, including future medical care.
  • Lost wages and diminished earning capacity.
  • Pain and suffering.
  • Loss of enjoyment of life.
  • Punitive damages, where applicable.

Handling Insurance and Defense Tactics

Dealing with insurance companies and defense attorneys can be daunting. We handle all negotiations to ensure that our clients are not unfairly lowballed or denied their rightful compensation. Our approach includes:

  • Presenting a strong case based on solid evidence and expert testimony.
  • Countering any attempts to shift blame to the injured worker.
  • Pushing back against any strategies to minimize the severity of injuries or the impact on the worker’s life.

Legal Strategy and Litigation

While many cases settle out of court, our team is fully prepared to take cases to trial when necessary. Our strategic legal planning and litigation experience ensure that we are always ready to advocate vigorously in court. This involves:

  • Preparing detailed legal arguments and securing expert witnesses.
  • Conducting depositions and managing discovery processes.
  • Presenting a compelling case to the jury.

Personalized Client Service

At Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP, we understand that dealing with a construction injury is a highly personal and stressful experience for workers and their families. We offer:

  • Regular updates and open lines of communication.
  • Compassionate support to help clients navigate both the legal process and their recovery.
  • Assistance with accessing medical care and rehabilitation services.

No Upfront Costs

We operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning our clients pay no upfront fees. Our legal fees are only collected as a percentage of the settlement or verdict, ensuring that our services are accessible to all workers, regardless of their financial situation.

At Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP, our commitment to justice and client well-being drives us to fight tirelessly for the rights of construction workers injured on the job. If you or a loved one has been involved in a construction accident, contact us for a free consultation to discuss your case and how we can help secure the compensation you deserve.

Types of Construction Accidents

At Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP, we understand the myriad dangers that construction workers face daily on the job. Construction sites are fraught with potential hazards, and accidents can happen in a variety of ways. Here are some common types of construction accidents that our firm is prepared to handle:

Ladders & Scaffolding

  • Falls from Scaffolding: Due to improper assembly or lack of safety equipment.
  • Ladder Collapses: Often caused by unstable positioning or defective ladders.

High-Elevation Falls

  •  Falls from Roofs and Other High Structures: These can occur when safety measures like guardrails are absent or inadequate.

Stray Objects & Debris

  • Falling Objects: Tools or materials that fall and injure workers below.
  • Debris-Related Accidents: Trips and falls due to poorly maintained work areas.

Electrical Mishaps

  • Electrocutions: Often result from contact with live wires or faulty electrical equipment.
  • Electrical Burns: Caused by sparks or direct contact with electricity.

Safety Gear Lapses

  • Inadequate Personal Protective Equipment: Accidents due to lack of helmets, goggles, or other protective gear.

Equipment & Tool Hazards

  • Malfunctioning Machinery: Such as backhoes, cranes, or power tools that can cause serious injuries.
  • Improper Use or Handling: Accidents that occur due to lack of training or negligence.

Demolition & Excavation Perils

  • Uncontrolled Demolitions: Leading to unexpected collapses or flying debris.
  • Excavation Cave-ins: Where trenches or excavation sites collapse on workers.

Roadway Construction Dangers

  • Traffic Collisions: Accidents involving passing vehicles near poorly marked construction zones.
  • Struck-by Incidents: Where workers are hit by construction vehicles.

Elevator Shaft Incidents

  • Falls into Shafts: Particularly dangerous in unfinished buildings.
  • Malfunctioning Elevator Equipment: Leading to sudden drops or entrapments.

Slips, Trips, & Falls

  • Uneven Surfaces: Accidents caused by irregular or unstable flooring.
  • Slippery Conditions: Due to oil, water, or other substances.

Other On-Site Hazards

  • Toxic Exposure: Contact with hazardous chemicals or inhalation of toxic fumes.
  • Fire and Explosions: Which can occur from mishandled materials or equipment malfunctions.

 Common Injuries from a Construction Accident

Construction sites in New York City are bustling hubs of activity where the risk of injury is significantly higher than in many other professions. Due to the nature of the work, the injuries sustained in construction accidents can be severe and life-altering. Here are some of the most common injuries that workers might experience as a result of a construction accident:

Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)

Caused by falls, strikes to the head, or debris, TBIs can range from mild concussions to severe brain damage.

Spinal Cord Injuries

These injuries often result from falls or being struck by heavy objects, leading to temporary or permanent paralysis.

Broken Bones and Fractures

Common in falls or crush incidents, these injuries can vary in severity and may require long recovery periods.

Lacerations and Abrasions

Sharp or unsecured materials can easily cause cuts and scrapes, which may lead to significant infections if not properly treated.

Burns

Exposures to fires, explosions, electrical malfunctions, and hazardous chemicals can cause burns that might be debilitating.

Electrical Shock Injuries

Common in an environment with incomplete electrical systems, these injuries can range from minor shocks to fatal electrocutions.

Amputations

Severe accidents may result in the traumatic loss of a limb or necessitate surgical amputation due to crush injuries.

Crush Injuries

Occurs when part of the body is squeezed between two heavy objects, potentially damaging muscles, bones, and internal organs.

Eye Injuries or Blindness

These injuries can permanently impair vision as a result of flying debris, chemical splashes, or intense light and heat.

Hearing Loss

Prolonged exposure to high noise levels or sudden loud noises without proper ear protection can cause temporary or permanent hearing loss.

Respiratory Diseases

Inhalation of dust, asbestos, chemicals, or other harmful substances can lead to long-term respiratory issues.

Sprains and Strains

Overexertion or awkward movements often lead to these injuries, affecting muscles and ligaments.

Internal Organ Damage

Severe impacts or crush injuries can cause internal bleeding and organ damage, necessitating immediate medical intervention.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

The psychological impact of a traumatic accident can lead to PTSD, affecting a worker’s mental health and ability to return to work.

Death

In the most tragic cases, construction accidents can lead to fatalities, leaving families to cope with the loss of a loved one.

Who is Liable for Your Construction Accident Injury?

Determining liability in a construction accident is a critical aspect of any personal injury claim. Construction sites often involve multiple contractors, subcontractors, property owners, and equipment manufacturers, which can make identifying the responsible party complex. Here’s a breakdown of who might be liable for your construction accident injury:

Potential Liable Parties

  • General Contractors and Subcontractors: Responsible for maintaining safe work conditions, providing safety training, and adhering to regulatory standards.
  • Property Owners: Liable if accidents result from unsafe conditions on the property they should have been aware of.
  • Equipment Manufacturers: Accountable for injuries caused by defective or malfunctioning equipment under product liability law.
  • Construction Site Owners: Can be held liable if their negligence in maintaining a safe site contributes to an accident.
  • Architects and Engineers: May be liable for design flaws that lead to unsafe conditions resulting in injuries.
  • Fellow Employees: Typically covered by workers’ compensation, except in cases of gross negligence.
  • Third Parties: Includes vendors or visitors whose negligent actions cause harm.

What To Do After a Construction Site Injury

If you or someone you know has been injured on a construction site, taking the right steps immediately after the injury can significantly impact the outcome of any future claims or litigation. Here’s a guideline on what to do following a construction site injury:

Immediate Steps

  • Seek Medical Attention: Get medical care immediately; document all injuries.
  • Report the Incident: Notify your supervisor and ensure the injury is recorded officially.
  • Document Everything: Take photos of the injury site and anything related, gather witness contact info, and save all related documents.

Preserve Evidence

  • Keep Equipment: Secure any equipment involved in its post-accident state.
  • Don’t Alter Scene: Maintain the accident scene as untouched as feasible for evidence purposes.

Medical and Legal Follow-Up

  • Follow-Up Care: Adhere to all medical advice and keep detailed records of your recovery.
  • Consult a Construction Accident Attorney: Speak with a construction site accident lawyer to understand your rights and next steps.
  • File Workers’ Compensation Claim: File promptly with accurate documentation.
    Communication
  • Limit Discussions: Avoid discussing incident details publicly or on social media.
  • Direct Queries to Lawyer: Refer any official inquiries to your lawyer to protect your rights.

Following these steps helps protect your health and legal interests after a construction site accident injury.

Compensation You May Be Able to Claim

If you’ve been injured on a construction site, understanding the types of compensation you may be entitled to claim is crucial for covering your losses and supporting your recovery. Here’s a breakdown of the potential compensation available:

Medical Expenses

  • Immediate and Ongoing Medical Care: Includes emergency room visits, hospital stays, surgeries, medications, physical therapy, and any ongoing treatments.
  • Future Medical Costs: Compensation for anticipated future medical needs related to the injury.

Lost Wages

  • Immediate Lost Income: Compensation for wages lost due to time off work following the injury.
  • Loss of Future Earnings: If the injury impacts your ability to work in the future, compensation may include projected future earnings.

Pain and Suffering

  • Physical Pain and Emotional Distress: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional trauma caused by the injury.
  • Reduced Quality of Life: If the injury leads to long-term disability or chronic pain affecting daily activities.

Loss of Consortium

Impact on Family Relationships: Compensation for the impact on relationships with your spouse or family, covering loss of companionship and support.

Punitive Damages

  • In Cases of Gross Negligence: Although rare in personal injury cases, punitive damages may be awarded if the defendant’s conduct was especially harmful or egregious.

Rehabilitation Costs

  • Physical and Occupational Therapy: Covers expenses related to rehabilitation therapy needed to regain mobility and function.
  • Counseling Services: Compensation for psychological counseling required due to emotional distress from the accident.

Legal Fees

  • Attorney Fees and Court Costs: In some cases, you can claim compensation for the legal expenses incurred while seeking damages.

Workers’ Compensation Benefits

  • Medical Benefits and Disability Payments: If eligible, workers’ compensation can provide benefits regardless of fault, including medical care and a portion of your income if you are temporarily unable to work.
  • Permanent Disability Benefits: Additional compensation may be available if the injury results in permanent impairment.

Wrongful Death

  • Funeral Expenses: If the construction accident results in death, the family can claim funeral and burial costs.
  • Loss of Financial Support: Compensation for the financial contributions the deceased would have provided to their family.

Injured on a Construction Site? Let Us Help!

Don’t let a construction accident put your future at risk. Contact Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP today for a free consultation. Our experienced attorneys will fight to get you the compensation you deserve while you focus on recovery. Call now to protect your rights and secure your compensation.


Construction Accident Lawyer FAQs

What does a construction accident lawyer do?

A construction accident lawyer provides legal representation to individuals injured on construction sites. They handle claims, negotiate with insurance companies, and if necessary, litigate in court to ensure victims receive compensation for their injuries, lost wages, and other damages.

Why do I need a lawyer after a construction accident?

A lawyer can help navigate the complex laws and regulations governing construction sites, identify liable parties, and maximize the compensation you can receive. They handle the legalities while you focus on recovery.

How is fault determined in construction accidents?

Fault is determined through evidence such as witness statements, accident reports, company safety records, and expert testimony. Lawyers often collaborate with accident reconstruction specialists to establish liability.

How much will it cost to hire a construction accident lawyer?

Most construction accident lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid if you win your case. Typically, they receive a percentage of the settlement or judgment.

How soon after my accident should I contact a lawyer?

Contacting a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident is advisable. Early intervention helps preserve evidence and witness testimonies and ensures that legal filings meet critical deadlines.

What if I’m partially at fault for the accident?

In many states, you can still recover compensation under comparative negligence laws, although your compensation might be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Can I claim compensation if I’m an undocumented worker?

Yes, your legal status does not typically affect your eligibility to claim compensation for injuries sustained on the job in the U.S.

What if my employer offers a settlement?

It’s important to consult with a lawyer before accepting any settlement offers. A lawyer can evaluate if the offer adequately covers all of your damages and negotiate for a better deal if necessary.

How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit after a construction accident?

The statute of limitations varies by state but generally ranges from one to three years from the date of the accident. It’s crucial to act swiftly to preserve your right to file a claim.

What kind of compensation can I expect?

Compensation can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of future earning capacity, and sometimes punitive damages if egregious conduct was involved. The exact amount depends on the specifics of your case, such as the severity of the injury and the established liability.