The procedure for suing in a wrongful death case has many complications in it. One type of wrongful death case results from electrocution. In New York, an accident victim’s family brings a wrongful death lawsuit when he or she died from the injuries. Every year, a high voltage electric shock causes approximately 400 people to die on the job. It should come as no surprise that electrical work brings the risk of exposure to electricians. Also demolition workers removing electrical fixtures risk exposure to an electrical shock. A person who survives the high voltage exposure is often never the same.
When your loved one tragically dies from injuries, the next step is starting a Wrongful Death lawsuit on behalf of you and your family. A wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible party must start within two years of the date of death. New York calls this time limit the “statute of limitations”.
The procedure for suing in a wrongful death case- Fatal Injuries from Electrical Currents
A worker exposed to an electrical current compares to a person who sustains burns. However, the burn is inside your body. The electrical current passes through the body using it as a conduit. If the current is very strong the burns will manifest outside the body. Electrical current is measured in what we call “volts” and “amperes” (often referred to as “amps”). A voltage of 500 or more is a “high voltage”. To give you some idea of how strong 500 volts is, household current is generally 110 or 220 volts. The procedure for suing in a wrongful death case can be handled precisely by a personal injury lawyer.
If you have ever gotten “shocked” from an electrical outlet then you know how that small exposure can make you feel: a bit tingly and a loss of feeling in the area that was affected. This is minor compared to the electrical shocks that can occur during construction work. Every day, workers at construction sites expose themselves to a much greater risk than an outlet shock. Sometimes, a contractor does not shut off the electrical circuits running through wiring and cables. A worker exposed to this circuit can have significant electric-related injuries, sometimes fatal.
Liability for Wrongful Death Under New York’s Labor laws
The particular facts of the accident will determine the strategy for bringing the wrongful death lawsuit. The manner in which the electrical current caused your loved one’s accident determines a building owner or contractor’s liability. New York’s Labor Laws may apply if the electrical shock causes the worker to fall from a ladder or scaffold. Under New York Labor Law 240(1), an owner or general contractor is liable when the failure to provide an adequate ladder or scaffold results in a construction worker sustaining height-related injuries.
In addition, New York’s Labor Laws may apply even if the worker was not at an elevation. Under New York State’s Industrial Code, an owner or general contractor who fails to shut off electrical circuits during construction or demolition work, causing a worker to become electrocuted, results in their liability under Labor Law 241(6).
At the Platta Law Firm we understand how a wrongful death resulting from an electrocution is overwhelming for a family. It goes without saying the loss of a loved who provided care, comfort and support will severely impact a family for the rest of their lives. Rest assured that our experienced attorneys at the Platta Law Firm can help you through these troubled times. Call our personal injury attorneys today and let us help.