If you’ve been injured in a construction accident due to the negligence of a third-party, there are certain steps you should take to ensure you obtain the compensation you deserve. While the facts and circumstances of every construction accident are unique, there are specific measures to take to safeguard your rights. While a skillful personal injury lawyer can best advise you regarding the actions to take based on your situation, it’s essential to take the following steps in every case:
Immediately Seek the Medical Attention You Need
The most important thing to do after a construction accident is prioritize your health. It’s critical to seek medical attention immediately — regardless of whether you think you’ve suffered an injury or not. Some construction accident-related injuries may not become apparent until days or even weeks later. A medical professional can rule out any internal injuries and recommend a course of treatment for any injuries diagnosed. Getting immediate medical attention can also help to establish your damages if you pursue a personal injury action.
Report the Accident to Your Employer
Under New York State law, you have 30 days from the date of the accident to file a report with your employer in order to file a Workers’ Compensation claim. In addition to preserving your right to file a claim for Workers’ Compensation benefits, an accident report can also serve as a critical piece of evidence in the event you later file a personal injury claim. Be sure to document the date, time, and location of the accident — along with a description of what happened.
File a Workers’ Compensation Claim
Filing a Workers’ Compensation claim after a construction accident can help ensure you have access to immediate benefits — including medical treatment and a portion of your lost wages. Importantly, it is not necessary to prove that someone else’s negligence caused the accident in order for Workers’ Compensation to provide economic relief. These benefits are available to all injured workers who were hurt during the course of their employment, no matter who was to blame.
Collect and Preserve Any Evidence
If possible, document your case by taking photos or obtaining video footage of the scene of the accident. You should also get the names and contact information for any witnesses who saw the incident as it happened. Other key evidence that will help to establish your injury claim is medical documentation — it’s crucial to continue treating until your doctor has determined you have reached maximum medical improvement. Your medical documentation will also demonstrate the extent of your injuries and help to place a value on your case.
Pursue a Personal Injury Action
Even if you received Workers’ Compensation benefits, you may still be entitled to pursue a personal injury action if you can show that a third-party’s negligence, carelessness, or recklessness caused your accident. Although you cannot sue your employer, due to New York’s Workers’ Compensation laws, you may still be able to hold a contractor, subcontractor, architect, engineer, site owner, vendor, or other third-party accountable for their actions. By filing a personal injury lawsuit, you may be eligible to not only recover your economic damages — but also non-economic damages for your pain and suffering.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you were hurt on the job because of a third-party’s negligence, an experienced attorney can assist you with pursuing the compensation you deserve. Located in Manhattan, The Edelsteins, Faegenburg & Brown, LLP has been committed to representing accident victims throughout New York City since 1937. Due to our skill, knowledge, and dedication to clients, we regularly obtain substantial settlements and verdicts. Contact us to schedule a free consultation at (212) 425-1999 today.