Third-Party Construction Injury Claims in New York City
In New York, the workers’ compensation system provides covered workers with necessary medical care and partial wage-replacement benefits to help them make ends meet while they are recovering. These no-fault benefits are available to construction workers regardless of who was to blame for the accident.
However, in cases where the employer or someone outside an injured worker’s chain of employment is to blame for their injuries, the worker could be eligible to file an additional claim for compensation under New York’s Labor Law. This could provide them with further compensation beyond what workers’ comp provides, such as the full extent of their lost wages, as well as pain and suffering.
If you have been injured on an NYC construction site, contact the experienced New York construction accident attorneys at The Perecman Firm, P.L.L.C., today. We are ready to discuss your options for pursuing the compensation you deserve during a free, no-obligation consultation.
What Is a Third-Party Construction Accident Claim?
A third-party construction accident claim is a legal claim for a work injury that was at least partially caused by the negligence of a third party. A third party is any relevant party that is not the worker’s direct employer.
Third-Parties Who Can Be Held Liable for a Construction Accident
Common third parties to a construction accident claim include property owners, subcontractors, manufacturers of defective products, and negligent motorists. Here are some examples of scenarios when each of these parties might be fully or partially at fault for a construction accident:
- A property owner who fails to maintain a safe work environment – A worker is injured by an unsafe condition on the construction site, such as a defective scaffold.
- A subcontractor who fails to handle their work obligations properly and safely – A worker is injured after a crane operator’s negligence caused the worker to be struck by an object that fell from a crane. The crane operator is a subcontractor and not a coworker.
- A manufacturer of faulty safety or construction equipment – A worker is injured when a defective ladder they are standing on breaks. The manufacturer of the ladder could be a liable third party.
- A negligent driver – A worker is injured when a negligent truck driver crashes into the construction site.
These are just a few simple examples of when a third party might be responsible for a construction worker’s injury and subject to a personal injury lawsuit. Contact our lawyers immediately to discuss your options if you were injured by someone you believe to be a third party.
Damages Available in a Third-Party Personal Injury Lawsuit
If a third party injures you while you’re on the job at a construction site in New York City, you could be entitled to several types of damages – that is, money compensating you for the harm you suffered as a result.
These damages could include money for:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of quality and enjoyment of life
- Medical expenses
- Loss of earning capacity
- Loss of household services such as cleaning, cooking, and home maintenance
The Difference Between a Workers Compensation Claim and a Personal Injury Claim
Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system that provides workers with medical and financial assistance after suffering a work-related injury or illness. In New York, most employers must carry workers’ compensation insurance for their employees.
An accepted workers’ compensation claim will cover all the worker’s related medical expenses and a portion of their lost wages while they are unable to work. It may also provide longer-term disability payments if the worker is permanently impaired because of their injury. However, it will not cover non-economic losses such as pain and suffering.
When someone other than an employer or a co-worker is responsible for a worker’s injuries, the worker can seek compensation from the responsible party by filing a personal injury claim against them. Unlike workers’ compensation’s no-fault system, a personal injury claim can be successful only if the injured worker can show that the third party was at fault for their injuries.
A successful personal injury claim could provide the injured worker with a broader range of benefits than what is available through workers’ compensation, including money to cover all lost income, pain, suffering, loss of consortium, lost enjoyment of life, and reduced earning capacity.
New York Labor Laws to Support Your Case
The State of New York enforces labor laws designed to ensure construction workers have a safe place to work. A worker who is injured because of a violation of these laws could potentially sue the at-fault party for additional compensation beyond that provided by workers’ comp insurance.
Labor Law 200 Requires New York employers to provide a worksite that is safely constructed, equipped, and operated in a manner that reasonably protects the lives, health, and safety of all workers. That also includes the employer’s responsibility of warning workers of all known hazards, fixing the hazardous situation and reinspecting it within 10 working days, abiding by state building construction codes, and maintaining sanitation and health facilities.
Labor Law 240 is known as the “Scaffold Law,” which places liability on a property owner and general contractor when a construction worker is injured by a poorly constructed object such as scaffolds, ladders, and objects falling from lifted surfaces. This law strictly requires that all scaffolding must bear four times the maximum weight required when in use.
Labor Law 241 establishes the procedures employers must follow when preparing for construction, demolition, or excavation. Contractors, owners, and their agents can be held liable under this law when they violate the industrial code, resulting in a construction accident that injures a worker.
How Our Lawyers Help Injured Construction Workers
Were you hurt on the job? Was someone other than your employer to blame? If so, you could be entitled to file a third-party claim against that party. The Perecman Firm, P.L.L.C., is here to help you fight for the justice and compensation you deserve.
Contact us today for a free consultation with a third-party construction accident lawyer in New York.