Construction accident injuries certainly qualify for workers compensation, and all New York employers must carry workers compensation insurance to cover their workers. However, when you are a construction worker and suffer serious injury in a construction accident, you may also have the right to sue the general contractor or property owner.
The legal right to sue these parties comes from the Scaffold Law.
The NY Scaffold Law (NY Labor Law section 240) offers construction workers extra protection against the on-the-job dangers they face when working at elevated heights. When contractors and property owners neglect to provide workers with adequate safety devices and safe work conditions, the courts hold them strictly liable for construction accidents involving falls and falling objects.
Even when the worker's own lack of care or negligence contributed to the injury, the courts can still hold the contractor and property owner accountable.
Responsibility for ensuring safe work conditions lies with the general contractor and property owner. (The exception is one and two-family dwelling owners.) They must provide safety equipment that meet industry safety standards. Such equipment includes:
Scaffolding must be able to bear four times the maximum weight required when in use.
In addition, sometimes you can sue third parties for damages. An example is a third party manufacturer of defective equipment. If the unsafe equipment contributed to dangerous conditions that result in serious injury, legal grounds may exist to sue the third party.
When serious injury or death result from a construction accident, it is wise to have an experienced lawyer who can protect your rights.
Schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys at Sackstein, Sackstein & Lee, LLP. We can discuss the legal prospects of pursuing a case.
Call us toll free at 888.519.6400, or contact us in Garden City at 516.248.2234, or in Flushing-Queens, Brooklyn or the Bronx at 718.539.3100. You can also fill in our contact form, and we will get in touch with you.
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