If you have been injured in New York City on a construction site, you may be confused as to which information you should share with your employer. Some details should be provided to your superior, while other knowledge is better kept to yourself.
Speak with a New York construction injury lawyer for specific guidance on the steps a construction worker should take after being hurt on a job site.
Construction Site Accident Statistics
The construction industry is huge in New York City. Between 2010 and 2018 the trade created nearly 400,000 new positions. Spending on building development exceeded $61 billion in 2018 and represented 10% of New York City’s overall economic output.
With the industry’s job growth, more workplace injuries have been reported. City data from 2019 shows that construction worksite deaths increased 33% over the five preceding years. During the same timeframe, the number of injured construction workers grew by 221%.
Though possible in any workplace, accidents are especially prevalent in the construction business. Work conditions on building sites are often dangerous, and employees frequently receive less training than is optimal. Construction site injuries can easily be sustained because of faulty machinery or the negligence of someone else working at the site.
It is essential that you take the appropriate steps to ensure your financial future after an injury to yourself or a loved one. A construction lawyer in NYC may be able to help you navigate this process and seek fair compensation for the harm sustained.
Steps To Take After Construction Accident Injuries in NYC
The minutes, days and weeks after being injured at a construction job site can be terrifying and overwhelming. An injured construction worker should follow these steps in this time of chaos:
Ensure Someone Calls 911
Call 911 or ensure that someone else does as quickly as possible. Construction site accidents can be serious, even life-threatening, and frequently necessitate swift medical care.
Even if you do not believe emergency services need to be called, schedule an appointment with a physician quickly to check for potential undetected injuries. Do not worry about medical costs.
Those should be covered by workers’ compensation insurance.
A NYC construction accident attorney can assist you in the aftermath of a workplace accident. While you recuperate, consider calling one to help you make wise choices during this complicated period.
Keep a Record of the Names of Potential Witnesses
Record the names, contact information and company details of anyone present at the time of your injury. Since many construction sites have numerous people and tradesmen working at any given time, prioritize the list with people who witnessed the event at the top and others present toward the bottom.
A construction lawyer in NYC will likely need to know the names of any contractors at the site when the accident occurred. This may help to determine which company could be held responsible for your injuries.
Though no one begins their workday with the expectation of becoming seriously hurt, it can happen. Start taking mental stock of the names of businesses at your job site and know the name of the company you work for in case the unexpected happens to you.
Carefully Document the Event
When possible, collect and keep proof of the incident. If you are too hurt to do so but still have your wits about you, request that a coworker gather information and photographs for you. Write down your employer’s name and the names of any other employees or contractors present at the time your injury occurred.
Many times, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) or the NYC Department of Buildings investigates accident scenes. Request copies of any documentation or reports, as they could assist your New York construction injury lawyer down the road.
Understand that simply stating that you were hurt on the job may not be enough to prove it to an insurance company or a court. This is why you should retain as many details as possible, beginning in the moments immediately after the mishap. Ask someone else to photograph you and the scene of the accident quickly.
Additionally, you or a family member could benefit from calling a construction lawyer in NYC as soon as possible. An attorney can explain what documentation is important and may be able to help you gather it. He or she will likely advise you to capture your memory of the event in writing so that you do not lose details over time.
Errors That Can Damage Your Construction Accident Case
One of the gravest errors people make after being injured on the job is failing to consult a NYC construction accident attorney. A lawyer may be able to assist you and keep you from making severe mistakes in the days after your incident.
This information can be invaluable later when the full reality of the harm you sustained is realized. Further, involving counsel could help you receive fair treatment from your employer and its workers’ compensation insurance company.
Common mistakes that injured workers make include following the advice of an employer, failing to report the injury in a timely manner, not filing for workers’ compensation, providing a recorded statement, and taking compensation without seeking legal counsel.
Following Your Employer’s Advice
Most companies attempt to minimize damage to their own reputation and finances in the aftermath of an injury on their job site. Be aware of this and speak with your New York construction injury lawyer before giving any information to your employer, its attorneys, or its insurance company.
If your superior or any representative of your employer asks you to meet with specific physicians or offers a hassle-free lump sum payment, direct the inquiry to your legal counsel. It may be impossible to tell whether your boss has your interests or the company’s bottom line in mind, so be as cautious as possible in your interactions.
Not Reporting the Incident
Some construction workers push through injuries on the job because they fear negative repercussions if they report an accident. This is not the smartest move and could wind up costing you the benefits you deserve. This could also cause a similar incident to occur involving someone else.
This is especially true if you were injured due to a faulty piece of equipment. Harm to your coworkers could be prevented if you speak up to let the foreman know that a tool or piece of machinery is defective or broken. New York law requires employees to report a workplace injury to the employer within 30 days of the incident.
Not Filing for Workers’ Compensation
Employees in the state of New York are legally entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits to cover lost wages and medical costs for work-related injuries. Employers cannot legally retaliate against a staff member who filed a legitimate workers’ compensation claim.
In many cases, it is difficult to file a lawsuit against an employer for job-related accidents. However, there are special circumstances in which a person may be able to sue their employer for life-changing injuries sustained on the job. A construction lawyer in NYC can help you steer through this complicated scenario.
Providing a Recorded Statement
Your boss may ask to hear your account of what happened before moving forward with a workers’ compensation claim or other payment. You may be friendly with this person, but you cannot be sure what his or her motives are. Anything that you say can be used in the future to your own detriment.
Although it may be in your nature to be agreeable and go with the flow, inform anyone asking questions that you must consult your NYC construction accident attorney before providing any information.
Forgetting To Follow the Doctor’s Orders
It is essential that you follow the orders of your physician after you sustain an injury while performing your job. Inform your doctor of the circumstances of the incident and ensure he or she knows that you were on the clock when you were hurt. Do not attempt any activity or go back to work until you have been medically cleared to do so.
Taking Compensation Without Consulting a New York Construction Injury Lawyer
Once your injuries improve, if you are still unable to perform your prior job duties, your employer or its insurance company may extend an offer for a workers’ compensation or other settlement. You should not accept any compensation without seeking the advice of your construction lawyer in NYC. An attorney may be able to help you properly account for all of the damages you sustained and the costs you have and will incur as a result of your injuries.
People who have sustained injuries while working construction should be aware that their physical recovery is likely not the only obstacle they will need to overcome. In addition to recuperating, it is entirely possible that you will battle to be paid fairly for your medical expenses and lost wages. Before making any decisions, consider consulting your NYC construction accident attorney.
Schedule a Meeting with a New York Construction Accident Lawyer Today
If you have sustained an injury while on the job at a construction site, you should be fairly compensated for your lost income, medical expenses, and any pain and suffering you have to weather. Understanding the legal system can be nearly impossible for injured and overwhelmed workers.
Let the New York construction accident attorneys from William Schwitzer and Associates assist you with the process. Our experienced injury lawyers in New York City can help you navigate this complicated period of your life. We will review your options with you and help you make an informed decision about how to proceed.