The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has established safety standards that a construction site must adhere to for the construction workers to be safe. However, construction sites still regularly report numerous serious accidents that lead to permanent or life-long injuries, such as broken hip bones, lost limbs, paralysis, and other injuries that could require an employee to undergo a surgical procedure. The law mandates that any worker who sustains an injury due to construction activities be compensated accordingly.
Many construction-related injuries resulting from negligence qualify for compensation for pain, suffering, and lost wages. A construction worker may sue the negligent party responsible for the injuries and seek compensation through a personal injury claim. However, in many cases where a worker is injured on the job, the victim may not sue his or her employer for negligence. Instead, the law provides workers compensation benefits.
What Is Workers Compensation?
Employees are not expected to sue their employers for on-the-job injuries since there is workers compensation coverage for this purpose.
Workers compensation provides employees with medical benefits and lost wages when they can no longer work due to a workplace injury. When an employer has this coverage, it is illegal to sue the employer for compensation.
What Are Third-Party Claims?
In addition to workers compensation, there is something called a third-party claim. While the law does not normally allow employees to sue their employers for injury compensation, it does allow claims to be brought against other parties who were responsible for the accident.
Such personal injury claims may be awarded in addition to the benefits obtained through workers compensation. For example, a motorist might cause an accident that results in an accident that leaves you injured on the job. In this case, you may sue the driver for compensation. In another example, if you operate faulty equipment or machinery that causes serious injuries, you may claim compensation from the manufacturer of the machinery.
Common Situations Resulting in Injury Claims
Not all construction accidents require a third-party claim. Therefore, every accident is treated on its own merits, and much depends on the number and the role of the parties involved. Understanding how each of the parties may have been responsible often requires an experienced St. Louis personal injury attorney.
Steps to Take After a Construction Injury
Whether you want to file a claim for workers compensation or file a personal injury claim against a third party, you must follow certain steps:
Call Emergency Services
The first thing to do is report the injuries to your employer through a notice.
Document the Accident
Like all personal injury cases, you need to document both the scene of the accident and the event to increase the odds of winning your claim. Record information about the accident, including witness statements and anything that bystanders witnessed.
Complete Workers Compensation Paperwork
You must observe the deadlines that apply to the claim. Remember that the clock begins ticking immediately following the accident. Missing the deadline can jeopardize your chances of obtaining compensation. Working with a workers compensation lawyer can help you win your claim.
File a Personal Injury Claim
Finally, you may initiate a claim against any responsible third parties outside of your employer. You will need an experienced personal injury attorney to help you navigate the process.
The Importance of Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney
Knowing exactly what steps to take in the event of a work-related accident can be complicated. This is a tricky process that requires legal knowledge. Trying this yourself can be overwhelming. Your lawyer can help you weigh your legal options and get the most compensation possible.