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Construction Accident FAQs

How do I know if I have a case?

The best way to find out about your case is to meet with a knowledgeable attorney with experience. Jeffrey J. Shapiro and Associates offers a free initial consultation. Call 800-728-5478 to find out about your case.

How much can I get for my injury?

It works this way: the greater the injury, the greater the compensation. The law allows you to recover the full extent of your losses, including lost wages, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. That being said, there's no way to know what your case is worth without talking to an attorney.

What is your hourly fee?

We do not charge for an initial consultation or for that matter, for any time it might take us to decide whether you have a case. Our firm, like almost all law firms who handle these types of cases handle them on a "contingent fee" basis, meaning that we only get paid at the end of the case if the case results in a settlement or a plaintiff's verdict. Our fee is a percentage of the recovery, usually one-third. The fee we earn is contingent on a successful outcome, which means that you do not pay us if we lose.

What about medical and other expenses?

We will advance expenses incurred in the preparation of a case. If there is a successful outcome we deduct the expenses "off the top" of the recovery and apply the percentages to the net sum (in that way we share part of the expenses). While New York allows lawyers to advance expenses for their clients the rules state that the client must be ultimately responsible for the expenses if the case is lost. Since so much is riding on the outcome, we are very careful about the cases we take.

How long after the injury can I still file a lawsuit?

It depends upon the type of case and who is being sued. This period of time is called the Statute of Limitations. However, you don't want to delay. As time passes, crucial witnesses and evidence may disappear and that can hurt your case. Acting promptly to explore your rights is always a good idea. If you think you've been hurt due to negligence, call an attorney immediately.

Can I sue my employer for a job site injury?

Probably not, but the Labor Laws of New York provide protection to injured construction workers that allows them to go beyond the limited benefits of benefits of workers' compensation. We will be happy to explain this to you.

If I get worker's comp benefits, can I still file a lawsuit for a job site injury?

Yes. While you can't sue your employer, there are other individuals, contractor, and subcontractors at the job site who may be liable. For example, under New York law, both the owner and General Contractor are responsible for job site safety and may be liable for failure to comply with OSHA or for failing to take reasonable precautions.

What is worker's compensation?

Workers' compensation is a system that requires employers, to pay lost wages, medical expenses, and certain other benefits to employees who are injured on the job. Workers' compensation is different from other types of torts in that it is not based on fault or negligence. The idea behind workers' compensation is not to right a wrong or punish negligence; rather, it is a way to protect employers from negligence lawsuits and injured workers from destitution.

What are the types of benefits workers are entitled to?

There are two general categories of workers' compensation benefits, medical and indemnity. Medical treatment that is medically reasonable and necessary and serves to cure or relieve the effects of the injury is compensable. Indemnity benefits are those that attempt to compensate the injured employee for lost earnings or earning capacity caused by the work injury. Workers who sustain injuries that cause permanent disability are entitled to permanent partial disability payments if they are able to return to work. The calculation of permanent partial disability payment varies among states but usually depends on a disability rating given by a doctor.

What is a wrongful death case?

A wrongful death case is a lawsuit brought on behalf of a decedent's survivors for their damages resulting from a tortuous injury that caused the decedent's death. A wrongful death case, in the context of medical malpractice may be defined as a death during a medical operation, the neglect of a doctor, hospital or nursing home, or that arises from defective drugs or medication.

What are the damages recoverable in a wrongful death case?

The following damages may be recovered in a wrongful death case:

  • Immediate expenses associated with the death (medical & funeral);
  • Loss of victim's anticipated earnings in the future until time of retirement or death;
  • Loss of benefits caused by the victim's death (pension, medical coverage, etc.);
  • Loss of inheritance caused by the untimely death;
  • Pain and suffering, or mental anguish to the survivors.
What are the major causes for workplace injuries?

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, truck drivers had more fatal injuries than any other occupation. Homicide was the second leading cause of job-related deaths, accounting for 16 percent of the total. Robbery was the primary motive for workplace homicide. About half of the victims worked in retail establishments, such as grocery stores, restaurants and bars, where cash is readily available. Fall also account for a good percentage of fatal work injuries. The construction industry, particularly special trade contractors such as roofing, painting and structural steel erection, accounted for almost half the falls. Firefighters, security guards and pilots also fall under the risk prone category.