Were you or a loved one hurt on a construction site in Atlanta, GA? If so, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Contact Hasner Law today for a free consultation. Our Atlanta construction accident attorneys will gladly review your case, outline your legal options, and answer any questions you have.
How Can Hasner Law Help Me If I’ve Been Injured in an Atlanta Construction Accident?
You do not need to navigate a complicated construction accident case on your own. At Hasner Law, we understand the serious medical consequences of construction injuries, as well as the financial and emotional stress this situation can place on your family.
Our Atlanta personal injury lawyers have more than 80 years of combined experience handling cases like yours. We’ll work tirelessly to get you the compensation you deserve. As we work on your construction accident case, we will:
- Investigate your claim
- Determine which parties could be held legally responsible
- Handle negotiations with insurance companies
- Advise you on settlement offers, and
- Take your personal injury case to trial if we cannot reach a settlement.
You and your family can take time to recover from a construction accident and leave the hard work to us. We will fight aggressively to get you the results you deserve. Call our Atlanta law offices to schedule your free consultation today.
Types of Construction Accidents in Atlanta
As you might imagine, construction sites are one of the most dangerous places to work. In fact, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), one out of every five workplace deaths involves a construction worker.
Of those deaths, more than half were due to the following “fatal four” causes:
- Being struck by an object
- Electrocutions, and
- Being caught-in/between (compressed by equipment, crushed by collapsed structure).
In addition to these types of accidents, we commonly see injuries related to exposure to hazardous materials, as well as those occurring while a worker is driving a company truck or vehicle.
Note that these injuries often result from OSHA safety standard violations, such as:
- Inadequate fall protection training
- Failure to meet requirements for safe scaffolding
- Failure to maintain other fall protections – such as allowing workers on unsafe structures, unprotected sides and edges, and in holes, and
- Unsafe equipment – including lack of safety guards.
It’s important to know why your construction accident happened. So, our skilled team will carefully analyze the circumstances surrounding your injury and work hard to figure out all possible causes. This will be critical if you decide to file an injury claim for damages.
Types of Construction Injuries in Atlanta, GA
Now, construction injuries can be serious, even catastrophic. This is because these workers commonly operate dangerous equipment, and are around potentially deadly hazards such as exposed wires and chemicals. Common types of injuries we see include:
- Fractures and broken bones
- Repetitive motion injuries
- Loss of limbs
- Eye injuries
- Spinal cord damage
- Electric shock
- Brain injuries – including traumatic brain injuries, and
If you’ve been injured on a construction site in Atlanta, you may be entitled to a financial award. At Hasner Law, no case is too big or too small. We’re here to help you fight to get money for all of your injuries. Give us a call today to learn more.
Who is Liable for My Construction Accident Injury?
Determining who is at fault for a construction-related injury can be complicated, and depends on the circumstances surrounding the incident. As part of investigating these accidents, key considerations are whether the person was working at the time and if someone else caused the injury.
Often the property owner or the construction company is the one responsible, but keep in mind that this is not always the case. For that reason, it’s always best to speak with an experienced Atlanta construction accident attorney if you are unsure what type of claim you have.
Workers’ Compensation Following a Construction Accident in Georgia
In most cases, if you were injured while working on a job site, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation is a benefit program in the form of insurance that most employers in Georgia are required to carry. It provides money to cover an employee’s medical bills, rehabilitation costs, and lost income.
Workers’ compensation applies to all injuries that occur on the job, and is considered “no-fault.” This means that you are still generally entitled to benefits even if you were partially to blame for the accident. Further, you do not need to prove that anyone else did anything wrong, such as another worker or your employer.
Compensation Available for Workers’ Compensation
But, it’s important to note that the amount you can receive in benefits is limited by state law. Specifically, while your medical bills and rehabilitation costs are covered, you are only allowed to receive a percentage of your income, based on the severity of your injury. You are also not entitled to certain “non-economic” losses that an injured person can normally sue for, such as pain and suffering.
In the event that a worker is killed in a construction accident, his or her spouse and/or dependents can instead receive the workers’ compensation benefits. This can help cover back medical bills, the wages the person would have earned, plus funeral and burial expenses.
Keep in mind that if you decide to collect workers’ compensation benefits this acts as the “exclusive remedy” for your injuries. This means that you are not permitted to sue your employer directly after you have received these payments.
Personal Injury Claim for a Construction Accident
Although workers’ compensation is often the best option for an injured worker, there are situations where you should consider filing a personal injury claim. First, if you were not working when the injury took place, you would not qualify for workers’ compensation and a lawsuit is your only option.
In addition, if you were on the job, but someone else caused your injury, you may be able to file a personal injury claim in addition to receiving workers’ compensation benefits. An example would be if you were driving a company truck to make deliveries and another motorist caused an accident with you.
Proving Negligence in a Personal Injury Claim
Now, unlike workers’ compensation, a personal injury lawsuit requires proof that the person responsible was “negligent” in some way. This means that you need to show fault in the form of carelessness, which led to you being harmed. In cases where you were also partially to blame, your award may be reduced based on your proportion of fault.
For example, if you can show that you are entitled to $100,000 in damages, but were found to be 10% at fault, the most you could collect would be $90,000. Bear in mind that if you are found to be more than 50% responsible, you are not able to collect any compensation.
As you can see, these types of cases can quickly become complicated. For that reason, it’s always best to reach out to an attorney if you think you may have grounds for filing a personal injury lawsuit.
One of the major benefits of succeeding in a personal injury claim is that you can get amounts for pain and suffering in addition to your medical bills, rehabilitation costs, and lost income. Further, there is no strict calculation for determining income losses. This provides more room for negotiation in settling your claim or going to court.
Construction Accidents and Products Liability Claims
Sometimes a construction accident is caused not by the actions of a worker or third-party but is instead the result of faulty equipment. If this occurs, you may have what is known as a product liability case against the manufacturer and/or retailer. The damages you can collect are similar to a personal injury lawsuit.
To be successful in a product liability claim, you must show that something went wrong in the design or manufacturing of the product. In other words, your injury cannot be caused by improper use of the equipment, it must be due to some defect with the product. The types of defects that we often see include:
Unreasonably dangerous products: in this case, the risks inherent in product design outweigh the benefits of having it designed a certain way. Note that with construction equipment it is not always possible to design something completely safe, but courts will consider if an alternative design would have been safer.
Failure to warn: manufacturers must warn users about nonobvious and foreseeable dangers arising from normal use of the product. The warning must also be conspicuous so that the user can actually see and read it.
Manufacturing issues: in this instance, the product is designed to be safe, but something went wrong during assembly. An example would be a lawnmower that was missing a bolt to keep the blade in place.
Wrongful Death Claims Following a Fatal Atlanta Construction Accident
Unfortunately, sometimes workers are killed as a result of construction site accidents. If this occurs, the surviving spouse or children may be able to file what is known as a wrongful death claim. Note, however, that if the deceased is classified as an employee (as opposed to an independent contractor), wrongful death claims are not available. Instead, the relative would file through the workers’ comp program.
A successful wrongful death claim allows family members to collect all of the damages associated with either a products liability or personal injury lawsuit, including:
- Medical expenses
- Conscious pain and suffering suffered before death, and
- Lost wages and benefits – including future earnings.
In addition, the award can also take into account amounts to cover funeral and burial expenses, and loss of care and companionship.
What To Do After a Construction Accident
It’s important to seek medical attention immediately after a construction accident. Also, if you are an employee, report the incident to your employer as soon as possible. Note that you must do this within 30 days of the accident or you may not be able to get benefits.
Next, you should document your injuries. This includes taking photos of the injury and noting any conditions in the workplace that may have contributed to the accident. Then write down your own recollection of what happened and gather the contact information for any witnesses.
Note that you may be contacted by an insurance company and offered a settlement. You do not need to accept this offer, and you always have the option of speaking with an attorney first.
Contact Our Atlanta Construction Accident Lawyers Today
At Hasner Law, our Atlanta personal injury lawyers are here to help you get the benefits and compensation you deserve. Keep in mind that it’s important to not delay pursuing these types of claims. There are strict time limits that must be observed or you risk losing out on compensation. So, don’t hesitate to contact our Atlanta law firm for a free no-obligation consultation today.