Construction Accident Lawyer NYC
Have you recently been hurt in a construction accident in NYC? You may have the right to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and suffering. The experienced NYC construction accident lawyers at The Platta Law Firm will help you fight to maximize your financial recovery.
Our attorneys are the fiercest advocates for injured construction workers in New York City. We go toe-to-toe with insurance companies every day and win big for our clients. Since our founding, we have won hundreds of millions of dollars in life-changing settlements and verdicts on their behalf.
Contact our law offices in NYC, NY to learn more about your legal rights and options. We offer a free consultation, so do not hesitate to call us at 212-514-5100 to schedule yours today.
What Should I Do After a Construction Accident?
A few simple steps can help to keep you safe and support any future claims for benefits or damages you might have:
Call 9-1-1 and Get Medical Treatment
You need to be taken to the hospital, by ambulance, from the location of your accident. Do not go home or to the hospital on your own. You’ll want to make it crystal clear that you got hurt on the job, not somewhere else between your trip from work to the doctor. Getting prompt medical attention will also help to ensure that all of your injuries are properly diagnosed and treated in a timely manner.
Document Your Injuries and the Scene of the Accident
Use your phone to take videos or pictures of where the accident happened. Include close-ups of where you were injured and take pictures from different angles and distances. The more images you can capture, the more details your attorney will have to work with down the line.
Call a New York Construction Accident Attorney
We will explain your legal rights and supervise your hospital stay to make sure all of your injuries are attended to. You will not have to pay any medical bills! And, our attorneys can come and meet you at the hospital and discuss your future treatment with doctors on your behalf. We’ll provide the proper insurance information to the hospital.
Report to Your Supervisor and File a Claim for Benefits
After speaking with one of our construction accident lawyers in New York City about the accident, make sure it is reported to your supervisor or foreman within 30 days of the construction accident.
By reporting your construction accident, you are not suing your employer! Our lawyers will file a workers’ compensation claim for you. In simple terms, this is equivalent to getting health insurance which is normally provided by an employer or the state.
I Was Hurt on a Job Site in New York City – What’s my Construction Accident Case Worth?
Many factors will affect how much money you can get after getting hurt on a construction site in New York City.
- What types of injuries have you suffered?
- Are you expected to make a full recovery?
- How will your injuries affect your ability to work – now and in the future?
- How have you been impacted by the trauma of your construction accident?
- Are you going to pursue workers’ compensation benefits, file a lawsuit, or both?
The value of your case can also depend largely on the attorney you choose to represent you. Construction accident cases can be incredibly complicated. You’ll want an attorney who knows New York Labor Laws inside and out.
You’ll also want an attorney with a demonstrated ability to take on these tough cases and win big for their clients. At The Platta Law Firm, we’ve helped injured workers across New York City recover millions in compensation:
Successfully Resolved Construction Accident Cases by The Platta Law Firm
- $4,495,000 for a 34-year-old construction worker injured on a demolition job.
- $4,200,000 for a 62-year-old construction worker injured due to a fall from a scaffold.
- $4,000,000 for a 55-year-old roofer who fell off a ladder working on a school renovation project.
- $3,250,000 for a 44-year-old plumber injured when working in unsafe conditions.
- $3,100,000 for a 51-year-old painter injured while working on an unsecured ladder.
- View all our labor law results
Ultimately, every case is different. It’s important to have an experienced construction accident lawyer in NYC review the specific circumstances of your situation and help you understand what yours might be worth.
Why You Should Hire an NYC Construction Accident Lawyer?
Your life can change in an instant when you’re hurt on a New York City construction site. The consequences can be long-lasting, and costly. And, whether you’re trying to get workers’ compensation benefits or file a lawsuit, it can be challenging to get the money you deserve in hand. Insurance companies will fight you every step of the way – and your employer, property owners, and other negligent parties will, too.
That’s where the Construction Accident Lawyers at The Platta Law Firm can help. We’re the award-winning trial attorneys you’ll want standing beside you as you go up against tough insurance companies and defendants with seemingly endless resources. Here’s why:
- You’ll benefit from our attorneys’ 130 years of combined litigation experience.
- We’ve won hundreds of Millions of dollars for injured workers and accident victims throughout NYC.
- We’re nationally recognized by respected legal organizations – including Super Lawyers, the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys, and Lawyers of Distinction.
- Our law firm has quite literally helped to shape labor and construction law in New York State. Thanks to our advocacy in the Willinski case, construction workers can recover damages for injuries that weren’t previously covered by the law.
Don’t give insurance companies and those responsible for your construction accident injuries any advantage. Hire a NY construction accident attorney and level the playing field. Better yet, call The Platta Law Firm and give yourself the edge you need to win your construction accident case.
Your first consultation is free. Contact our New York City, NY law office to schedule yours today. Our team is always available to take your call – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
NYC Construction Site Accident Statistics
Working at a construction site is one of the most dangerous careers in the United States. Certainly, the chances of workers becoming injured increase greatly in New York City, where new construction projects more than double those of the next metropolitan area. In fact, there are approximately 35,000 active construction projects across all five boroughs. That makes it the fourth-largest construction industry in the nation.
Unfortunately, this means thousands of construction workers will be seriously injured or killed on the job. Construction workers make up about 5% of the workforce in New York City. They also account for about 27% of all work-related deaths.
How Many Workers are Injured or Killed at NYC Construction Sites Every Year?
According to a report published by the NYC Department of Buildings, there were a total of 959 construction-related accidents in New York City in 2019. Those accidents resulted in no fewer than 595 injuries and 12 deaths. That’s roughly 2.6 job-site accidents, injuring anywhere between one and two laborers every single day.
In 2020, during a year when construction and worksites across the city were essentially shut down because of the Coronavirus pandemic, there were 484 reported construction accidents in NYC. At least 502 workers were injured and another 8 were killed in these tragic work accidents. Even though the total number of construction accidents declined during this period of time, the fatality rate increased.
What are the Top 4 Causes of Fatal Accidents on Construction Sites?
Over the years, research has revealed four categories of workplace hazards that cause the majority of worker deaths. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) calls them the “Four Fatal” or “Four Spot” hazards of the construction industry:
Falls are responsible for about 36% of all fatal construction accidents nationwide. A small slip or trip on debris or equipment can spell danger for a construction worker, especially if they are working above the ground on a ladder or scaffolding.
According to the New York City Health Department Bureau of Vital Statistics, falls caused a staggering 58 percent of construction accident deaths between 2007 and 2014. Data shows that 25 percent of these fatal accidents involved falls from scaffolding, 16 percent involved ladder falls, and another 11 percent involved falls from roofs.
Caught in/Between Objects
Being caught between objects refers to when a construction worker:
- Trapped or compressed by equipment or objects, or
- Struck, trapped, or crushed when collapsing into a structure, equipment, or material.
In an effort to reduce the risk of this deadly hazard, workplace maintenance is important. These caught-in/between accidents account for 2% of fatal construction accidents.
Electrocution makes up more than 10% of construction fatalities. Exposed wires, faulty wiring, and a variety of other electrical problems cause numerous deaths each year. While electricians are at the greatest risk of being electrocuted, other laborers are also susceptible. Construction sites are busy places and many trades are often working at the same time.
Struck by Objects
When a person is struck by an object they can be injured severely – especially when they are hit on the head. Workers can be struck by falling objects, swaying objects, or flying objects. Anytime gravity causes an object to move (particularly a heavy one), workers can be at risk of being struck and killed.
Construction work often involves working at extreme heights or operating heavy equipment such as cranes and forklifts. Meanwhile, this oftentimes creates even another potential hazard, objects falling from the work area above. The NYC Health Department reveals that 32 percent of fatal construction accidents between 2007 and 204 involved workers who were struck, crushed, or caught between objects or equipment.
Why Do Construction Accidents Happen in New York City?
Construction sites are dangerous places to work. When safety regulations are followed – by both employers and workers – accidents shouldn’t happen. Unfortunately, all it takes is a simple act of negligence to put workers at serious risk of harm. And, unfortunately, OSHA fatality investigations reveal that there’s typically at least one “serious safety violation” cited in more than 90 percent of New York City cases.
Willful violations – where an employer knew about the issue but didn’t take action to fix it – were present in 12 percent of all OSHA fatal NYC construction accident investigations. As a result, some of the most common causes of construction accidents and construction site injuries in New York City include:
- Defective machinery
- Defective or unsafe work equipment
- Failure to provide adequate training and supervision
- Failure to provide adequate or necessary safety equipment
- Working from heights on unsecured platforms or structures
- Failure to properly secure or otherwise safeguard equipment
Fortunately, New York has many labor laws in place that can be used to hold those responsible for worksite safety accountable if and when accidents happen.
What if I Am an Undocumented Construction Worker? What are my Rights?
It’s well established that a significant number of New York City construction workers are immigrants – including many who are undocumented. Will being an undocumented worker prevent you from recovering compensation if you suffer injuries on a dangerous construction site in New York? The short answer is no. Under New York State Labor Law, everyone – regardless of immigration status – has the right to seek compensation for work-related injuries.
Additionally, your status as an undocumented immigrant can’t be used against you. Your employer can’t deny benefits or threaten to report your immigration status to the police or Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) if you attempt to exercise your rights.
If your employer or their insurance company engages in any of this behavior, or if you have a reasonable fear that your immigration status will be unlawfully disclosed, do not hesitate to contact us. Our New York construction accident attorneys will help you hold your employer accountable and work to get you the benefits you deserve under the law.
What New York State Labor Laws Protect Construction Workers?
New York has some of the most comprehensive legal protections for construction workers.
New York Labor Law 240 – The Scaffolding Law
Under Labor Law 240, workers must be provided with specific safety devices, such as scaffolds or ladders, that protect them from falling from a height.
The same law protects workers’ rights when struck by falling objects such as construction materials or debris. Therefore, when these types of accidents happen, the law renders the property owner and general contractor liable for the workers’ injuries. A violation of this law allows a construction worker to recover monetary damages from the property owner or the general contractor.
New York Labor Law 241
Under New York Labor Law Section 241, an owner or general contractor is responsible for failing to comply with the specific regulations of the State’s Industrial Code, Rule 23. This deals with protections that are required in construction, demolition, and excavation operations, such as:
- Personnel hoists
- Material hoisting
- Cranes and derricks
- Power-operated equipment
- Exhaust gases from internal combustion engines
The Industrial Code has very specific requirements and regulations in place to help minimize the risk of accident or injury. If a contractor or owner fails to comply and a worker is injured, they can be liable for the consequences. Liability could attach if a worker falls into an uncovered hole, slips or trips on construction debris on the floor, or is injured when a trench wall collapses.
New York Labor Law 200
New York Labor Law Section 200 protects you in a situation where a contractor failed to provide “reasonable and adequate protection” for your “health and safety” at a construction site. Section 200 offers broad protections for workers – violations can warrant civil actions for damages.
Our Lawyers Handle All Types of Construction Accidents Cases in NYC
At The Platta Law Firm, we represent workers who have been seriously injured because of:
No matter what type of construction accident you’re involved in, it’s important to report it to your employer, seek medical care, and reach out to a construction accident attorney near you in NYC.
These steps will help to keep you safe and protect any legal rights you may have to recover compensation. Our legal team is always standing by to help – so do not hesitate to call us for assistance after you get hurt on a New York City job site.
Can I Sue my Employer After I Get Hurt in a Construction Accident?
In New York, you cannot file a lawsuit against your employer. Surprisingly, this even applies if your employer was directly responsible for the injury. That’s because almost all employers in New York are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance.
Under this no-fault system, injured workers are entitled to benefits, regardless of who’s at fault. In exchange for benefits, the worker waives the right to file a lawsuit against their employer. There is, however, an exception to this rule: if the employer does not provide workers’ compensation insurance. In this case, you are entitled to file a civil lawsuit against your employer, who will then be held responsible for payment of your personal injury compensation.
To get help with filing your workers’ compensation claim, call our NYC workers’ compensation attorneys at 212-514-5100.
Can I Lose My Job if I file a Construction Accident Claim?
Yes, but there are legal limitations. New York is an “at will” employment state, which means construction workers can be fired for any reason—barring age, race, ethnicity, or gender. It is also illegal to fire an employee for filing a workers’ compensation claim. The same applies to witnesses in another person’s claim. However, an employer well versed in the nuances of the law will likely seek acceptable reasons for terminating an injured worker. Of course, none of this will matter to anyone who suffered a career-ending injury.
Due to their severity, construction accidents are some of the highest-settled cases in New York. The financial security of being compensated for life after a work-related accident often outweighs the risks of losing employment.
Who Can Be Held Liable for a Construction Accident in NYC?
A construction accident lawsuit filed on your behalf usually goes against the building owner and the General Contractor. However, it is never against your employer. Therefore, you usually lose the right to sue your employer for compensation if you are injured in a construction accident.
It’s important to know that benefits are received through workers’ compensation. However, third parties who are not your employer can be sued for damages in most construction accident cases. Anyone who contributes to your accident – directly or indirectly – can be on the hook for your costs and suffering. An investigation into your construction accident might reveal that one or more of the following parties is liable:
- Building Owner
- Property Manager
- General Contractor
- Construction Site Owners
- Manufacturers (of equipment and machinery)
Call our skilled legal team at 212-514-5100 for help understanding who might be is responsible for your compensation and how much you can recover. After reviewing the specific details of your case, our knowledgeable construction accident attorneys in NYC may decide to sue additional parties to bring you a better result.
What Damages are Available to Injured Construction Workers in NYC?
The compensation that’s available to you will depend on the legal path you take.
Claim for Workers’ Compensation Benefits
If you file a claim for workers’ compensation, the following benefits can be awarded:
- Medical expenses: Reasonable and necessary medical costs
- Temporary total disability: two-thirds of your average weekly wage before your injury (multiplied by your percentage of disability)
- Temporary partial disability: the difference between what you could earn before you got hurt and what you can earn now
- Permanent disability: benefits awarded to compensate for your reduced earning ability if your construction accident injury is permanent
Death benefits can also be awarded to families who lose a loved one in a fatal NYC construction accident. You’ll notice that workers’ compensation benefits are limited. Many are subject to caps – meaning that there are maximum amounts you can recover for your lost wages.
Often, it’s possible to also secure compensation by filing a third-party lawsuit. Damages in civil lawsuits are more expansive and can even include compensation for your pain and suffering.
Personal Injury Lawsuit for Damages
In a third-party civil action, both economic damages and non-economic damages can be awarded. Economic damages help to make up for the financial costs related to your construction accident and resulting injury, such as:
- Nursing care
- Medical equipment
- Loss of income and wages
- Rehabilitation and therapy
- Medical devices, including prosthetics
- Medical expenses, including hospitalization, surgery,
Non-economic damages, on the other hand, compensate for trauma that’s difficult to value. Often referred to as “pain and suffering” damages, these are injuries and consequences that are incredibly personal and subjective, like:
- Chronic pain
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of quality of life
Don’t underestimate your injuries – physical or otherwise. Our experienced construction accident attorneys in NYC will carefully evaluate your circumstances to identify all of your damages. We’ll consult with experts, when necessary, to help us better understand how your injuries and trauma affect you – now and in the future.
With this detailed and comprehensive approach, we can be confident that we enter negotiations (or trial) armed with the strongest arguments to get the compensation you deserve.
Can I Still Recover Compensation if I’m Partly at Fault for my Construction Accident?
Typically, yes. Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, so benefits are available regardless of who’s responsible. Sharing fault will, however, affect your ability to recover damages in a third-party lawsuit. New York operates under a pure comparative negligence system. Your financial award will be adjusted to reflect your contribution to the accident.
If you’re assigned 30% liability, then your financial award will be reduced by 30%. It’s important to stand up and defend yourself when insurance companies, property owners, or other parties start to point fingers. They’re only trying to push as much of the blame onto your shoulders as they can, regardless of whether or not it’s deserved.
With The Platta Law Firm in your corner, you’ll know that our attorneys will anticipate these types of tactics and have strategies in place to discount or disprove claims that you share fault. The less liability you share, the more money you can potentially recover for your construction accident injuries.
What Evidence Can Help my Attorney Win my Construction Accident Lawsuit?
When you file a construction accident lawsuit, you’ll have the burden of proving that someone else was negligent (or is strictly liable) and, therefore, responsible for your injuries. You’ll need facts and evidence to support this claim. The following evidence can be helpful in supporting your lawsuit (and your claim for workers’ comp benefits, too):
- Pictures, security footage, and recordings are raw evidence that provides the foundational base for any accident claim.
- Written statements recorded right after an accident have the most impact in a case. You should cooperate with the authorities but stay true and consistent in your story.
- Pieces of equipment from a construction site or any other object tied to your accident will be valuable to the case. Moreover, having possession of a physical piece of evidence has always been historically helpful.
- Police or accident reports provide a level of legitimacy for any accident case. Often, they contain important details that are likely to be lost or forgotten over time.
- Medical records are essential to your well-being and the timeline of any construction accident case. You’ll need to prove your injuries are related to your construction accident. Your medical records can help establish that critical causal link.
- Worker information: including the names, occupations, and responsibilities of everyone on the jobsite.
- Witness statements and affidavits.
- Depositions can also be incredibly helpful during a construction accident lawsuit. If you bring a construction injury claim under Labor Section 240 (New York’s Scaffolding Law) or another civil code, our attorneys will depose witnesses, co-workers, supervisors, and other relevant parties.
- Evidence of pain and suffering brings the humanity of a case to light. Therefore, presenting your sudden inability to perform daily tasks or make a proper living is always taken into consideration.
- Government and agency reports: including NYPD accident reports, NYC Department of Buildings records, violations, and citations, and OSHA investigations (current and prior citations).
- Employer job documents: including work permits, daily logs, safety meeting records and minutes, safety memos, inspection reports, safety equipment inspection and maintenance records, photographs of the jobsite and construction progress.
- Workers’ Compensation records: including ambulance reports, hospitalization records and information, rehabilitation records, your workers’ compensation file, and prior claims submitted.
- Your tax and employment records: including Union records, job file, and tax returns showing your income history.
- Insurance policies and endorsements that cover the worksite and property.
- A death certificate and autopsy reports if a construction worker was killed in a fatal jobsite accident.
The Importance of Depositions in a New York Construction Accident Lawsuit
Depositions can also be incredibly helpful during a construction accident lawsuit. If you bring a construction injury claim under Labor Section 240 (New York’s Scaffolding Law) or another civil code, our attorneys will depose witnesses, co-workers, supervisors, and other relevant parties.
A deposition is essentially a witness’s sworn statement that’s provided out of court before a trial begins. These depositions can help to shed light on your construction accident and allow us to gain insight into how your jobsite was operated by your employer – potentially highlighting errors, mistakes, or even blatant violations of NYC construction safety laws.
Our New York City construction accident lawyers have decades of experience handling lawsuits like yours – we know which pieces of evidence will be most helpful as we fight for damages. Let us handle your legal battle. You take the time you need to recover. Contact our law offices in Manhattan to discuss your case now.
Do I Need a Witness to Prove my Case?
You do NOT need a witness to prove your case, but it can be beneficial. If the witness’s testimony aligns with yours, it makes for a much stronger case. We will make sure you have everything you need to get the maximum compensation you deserve.
How Long Do I Have to File a Claim After a New York Construction Accident?
You must notify your employer within 30 days of getting hurt on a job site in New York City. Then, you’ll have a maximum of two years to file a formal request for workers’ comp benefits. If you have the ability to file a lawsuit, the statute of limitations is three years. For wrongful death claims arising from a fatal construction injury, families have just two years to take action.
There are some exceptions to these rules, but they’re few and far between. It is important to know that you will forfeit your right to secure benefits or win damages if you miss the deadline that’s applicable to your case. Contact our New York City construction accident attorneys for immediate assistance. We are ready to help you fight to win your case and maximize your recovery.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Trusted NYC Construction Accident Lawyer
You have the power to hire an attorney to help you after a construction accident in NYC, NY. Your choice of attorney matters. It could be the difference between getting minimal benefits and walking away with a settlement check worth millions.
That’s why The Platta Law Firm should be your very first call after you get hurt. Our NYC construction accident lawyers have the experience, knowledge of state and local labor laws, and resources that you’ll need to get the best possible results in your case.
We offer a free consultation and work on a contingency fee basis. This means that there’s no risk in asking for our help – we only get paid if we win your case. Our law firm represents injured workers in Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, and throughout the greater New York City metro area. Call us at 212-514-5100 to get started now.