Injuries can occur on any job. Construction sites, however, are particularly dangerous, and workers who are injured on construction job sites have the legal right to compensation for their injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured on the job, contact the workers’ compensation attorneys at the Dolman Law Group. South Florida workers have trusted our attorneys’ skills and experience for decades to ensure the protection of their legal rights.
Like any workplace, construction sites must be kept safe for the employees who work on them. Construction sites are, in fact, so dangerous that there are specific regulations pertaining to their upkeep. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) organizes safety campaigns and inspections specific to construction site hazards. Florida Statutes also impose specific safety obligations on construction companies: Chapter 553 of the Florida Statutes, for example, sets building construction standards and safety requirements.
When a company violates federal or state safety standards and a worker is injured as a result, the employer is obligated to compensate the employee for his or her injuries and losses. The many ways in which an employer can be liable for a construction site accident include:
Any employee who is injured within the scope of employment is entitled to compensation through the employer’s workers’ compensation coverage. The employee (or a legal representative) can file a claim directly with the workers’ compensation carrier. Sometimes, the workers’ compensation carrier will deny the claim, contending the injury was not sustained during the course of employment, and this must be overcome to ensure that the claim is covered. Other times, the carrier will attempt to reduce the amount of the claim or argue that medical treatment is excessive or unnecessary. These arguments, too, must be defeated so the employee is not denied the right to fair legal compensation for all losses. These losses include medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, projected future medical bills, decreased future earning potential, and any other financial losses that came as a direct result of the workplace accident.
Of course, not just construction workers are injured in construction site accidents. Passersby can also receive injuries because of a wide variety of hazardous conditions that are commonly found on construction sites. They, too, can be compensated for injuries sustained on construction sites. Compensation is obtained by filing a claim with the construction company’s liability insurance carrier, as opposed to the worker’s compensation carrier.
To sustain a claim for construction site injuries, a victim must first prove that the owner of the land—or the construction company in charge of the premises—was legally responsible for causing the injuries. This can be difficult to prove—for example, if the injury victim was trespassing on the construction site at the time of the accident, the construction company may have no legal obligation toward him. On the other hand, if the construction site was not properly blocked off, and trespassing could have been foreseeable, the construction company may have a legal obligation to make the site safe, even for trespassers.
This can require a complicated legal analysis. Large construction companies and their insurance carriers have teams of attorneys whose job is to justify the denial of claims in circumstances such as these. It is therefore important for injury victims to have legal counsel protecting their rights to be compensated for injuries.
Once the injury victim has proven that the construction company or landowner was liable for causing injuries, the value of the claim must be ascertained. Like workers’ compensation insurance adjusters, a liability insurance adjuster will be tasked to pay out as little as possible, even on valid claims. The injury victim will often have to defend his or her medical treatments and fight hard to be compensated for pain and suffering.
It is not always the construction company who is liable for a construction accident. Here are just a few of the many other parties who may be obligated to compensate victims for injuries sustained on a construction site:
The Dolman Law Group protects residents and visitors of St. Petersburg to ensure that injury victims are fairly compensated for workplace injuries. Call (727) 222-6922 or to schedule your free consultation with a personal injury attorney today. Our experienced, aggressive work injury attorneys have decades of experience in protecting the rights of accident victims across southern Florida.