Construction Accident Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale
Construction in Fort Lauderdale is booming. With its great weather and perfect location, it’s no wonder more and more development projects are starting up in Florida, and Fort Lauderdale in particular. Miami, often considered the most popular metropolis in the state, has pushed developers to find less expensive properties due to the rising property costs there. This has allowed Fort Lauderdale to attract new development, and with it, the need for more construction manpower.
Construction work can be back-breaking and difficult. Buildings, in particular, require heavy equipment, and workers can oftentimes find themselves high above the city’s skyline, with little more to protect them than some scaffolding and rope. Inevitably, accidents happen.
According to the United States Department of Labor, there were over 1,000 accidents related to construction in the U.S. in 2018, making up more than 20% of all worker accidents for the year. The top four deaths in the private sector were attributed to falls, being struck by an object, electrocution, and workers being caught in or compressed by equipment or objects.
If you were injured on the job, we can help. The Fort Lauderdale construction accident lawyers at Schlacter Law understand the dangers involved in the job and have the experience necessary to help navigate the law to get you the best compensation available. Call today for a consultation.
Typical Accidents and Injuries
Due to the nature of construction work, accidents and the situations that lead to them are common. Some situations on building sites that typically lead to accidents include:
- Malfunctioning equipment
- Lack of safety equipment
- Lack of guardrails
- Falling from a high position
- Slippery conditions
- Crushing or compression by heavy objects
- Falls from ladders
- Falls from scaffolding
- Failing scaffolding
- Falling objects
- Fires and explosions
- Cave-ins and collapses
- Power tool accidents
- Machinery accidents
- Construction vehicle accidents
The top four types of building accidents accounted for more than 60% of all construction injuries. Falls caused the most accidents in 2015, accounting for 38% of the 937 deaths that occurred that year. Being struck by an object accounted for 9.6% of deaths, electrocutions accounted for 8.6% of deaths, and being caught in between equipment accounted for 7.2% of deaths.
While many accidents result in death, far more of them result in injuries. The types of injuries from these accidents include:
- Cuts and lacerations
- Broken bones
- Internal bleeding
- Brain injuries
- Spinal injuries
Each accident injury poses its own risks, as well as the costs associated with them. Cuts and lacerations can cause infections if left untreated, and fractures and bone breaks can cause permanent impairment if not properly set and given adequate rest time.
Some injuries, such as spinal cord injuries and paralysis can cause devastating injuries that require long-term medical care for the rest of a victim’s life. The costs for this type of care can be astronomical, and without proper compensation could bankrupt a construction worker or his family.
Because the different types of building accidents and injuries are so numerous, you may be entitled to compensation if you were injured in any way on a construction site due to someone else’s negligence. Call a Fort Lauderdale construction accident lawyer today. With years of experience litigating these types of cases, we can help ensure that you get as much compensation as possible under the circumstances of your situation.
Who do you sue after a construction accident?
Following a construction accident, it is not always clear who the responsible party would be. Even in cases where an employer might be liable, there may be limits on how, and how much, compensation would make it into the hands of a construction worker.
Worker’s compensation is a type of insurance that employers provide to employees, and under certain circumstances, this may be the only type of compensation available if the employer was responsible for an injury. Worker’s compensation provides this insurance through the employer, and typically in return for providing the insurance, an employee is prevented from suing the employer directly. While worker’s compensation may be a good source of money for an injured construction worker, there are instances where it does not adequately provide enough compensation to make someone whole. Under these circumstances, it may be necessary to seek compensation elsewhere.
There may exist other parties who are liable for an injury in a construction accident, and these non-employer parties may be liable for injuries through a personal injury lawsuit for negligence. Other parties that may be liable might include:
- A general contractor
- A subcontractor
- The owner of the property
- The property developers
- Construction managers
- The property’s architect
- The property’s engineers
When an accident occurs, even in cases where the employer created an unsafe condition, these other parties may be partly, or even entirely to blame for the result of the accident. For example, if the engineer designed a beam that was unable to bear the weight of the roof, and a collapse injured a worker, they may be liable.
Other parties that might be liable following a construction accident might include the manufacturer of a tool, piece of equipment, or even safety equipment that failed to work as it should. There could be a possible product liability lawsuit for a defective product in cases where the defective product contributed to the injury. Examples might include a drill that malfunctioned, a ladder that was defective in its design, or a bulldozer that had a manufacturing defect.
Employers and property owners may also be liable for civil and criminal penalties when the working conditions that led to the injury were in violation of the safety rules set forth by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). This federal agency creates regulations to help ensure that workplaces are safe. In construction accidents, all too often an OSHA safety violation contributed to the accident.
It is clear that following an accident, there might be numerous liable parties responsible for any injuries. From the employer to the property owner, and even the architect or engineer that designed the building, these different defendants may all have contributed to a dangerous situation. Determining who is liable, and to what degree, requires an experienced construction accident lawyer. With years of experience helping construction workers get the compensation they need, a construction accident attorney in Fort Lauderdale is here to help.
How We Handle Cases
- Your attorney will aggressively investigate your case. Schlacter Law will compile all necessary evidence needed to maximize the value of your case. Which includes but is not limited to photographs, police reports, security camera footage, witness statements, medical bills and medical records.
- You will remain in constant contact with Schlacter Law about the progression of your case.
- Your attorney will present your case to the insurance company and will attempt to resolve your case before the case goes to court for maximum compensation.
- Your attorney will make every effort possible to resolve the case as quickly as possible for the most amount of money you may be entitled to. You will be actively involved in the negotiation process with your attorney. Schlacter Law understands that this is your one opportunity to get justice for your loss.
- If settlement negotiations are unsuccessful, Schlacter Law will be fully prepared to bring your case to court to fight for the justice you deserve.
- At no cost to you, Schlacter Law will hire any experts and professionals needed to maximize your recovery and present your case in the strongest form possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
Even if you were partly to blame for an accident you may still be entitled to compensation. As a comparative negligence state, Florida allows plaintiffs to receive compensation even if they are partly at fault. The amount of compensation they would normally have received would be reduced by the percentage of fault attributed to them. If a victim would have received $200,000 but was found to be 10% at fault, this amount would be reduced by $20,000, or 10% of their original compensation amount. Be sure to speak with a construction injury lawyer to discuss how this might affect your ability to receive money after an accident.
While it isn’t necessary to file a lawsuit right away, the sooner a lawsuit is filed the better. The statute of limitations bars a lawsuit from being filed beyond a certain time period. For negligence cases, the statute of limitations requires a lawsuit to be filed within four years from the accident. Compensation may be unavailable if the lawsuit isn’t filed within this window of time. Be sure to speak with a Fort Lauderdale construction site accident lawyer to ensure that these important deadlines are not overlooked.
Determining the amount of compensation available is difficult without a better understanding of the severity of any injuries following an accident and the costs associated with them. Compensation might include the dollar value of lost wages, the costs of medical care, and the costs associated with any pain and suffering. To come up with an accurate dollar amount, consult a construction site injury attorney today.