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What are Third-Party Construction Injury Claims?

Sep 3 2019

Construction is one of the most dangerous industries in New York. Workers can suffer serious injuries by falling or after getting struck with an object. Other workers are injured when defective equipment explodes in their faces.

As experienced Manhattan construction accident lawyers, we meet with clients every day who have been injured on the job site and need compensation. They are concerned that they cannot pay their family’s bills and wonder if they will ever be able to return to work. In some cases, they might have a third-party construction injury lawsuit, which we explain below.

What are Third-Party Construction Injuries?

A third party is anyone who is not a construction workers’ employer. This could be a subcontractor, the project owner, or the manufacturer of defective equipment. An injured worker can sue when a third party is responsible for their injuries.

Here are some examples of third-party lawsuits:

  • A defective ladder collapses when you try to climb it.
  • Faulty wiring on the job site causes a power tool to electrocute you.
  • Subcontractors do not properly construct scaffolding, making it unstable.
  • Scaffolding is defective because of a design or manufacturing defect, which causes it to collapse.
  • A hidden defect on the property causes a construction worker to fall and injure himself.
  • A motorist plows into the job site, striking a worker.

In these examples, someone other than your boss might be to blame for the accident and your injuries. If so, you might be able to bring a third-party claim.

Why are Third Party Construction Claims So Important?

Under New York’s workers’ compensation law, an employee cannot normally sue his or her employer, even when an employer’s negligence has caused the accident. Instead, workers are limited to the benefits provided by their insurer’s workers’ compensation insurance policy.

Unfortunately, workers’ compensation benefits are not known for being generous. As an example, a disabled worker can only receive about two-thirds of his average weekly salary in disability benefits, so he will suffer a dramatic drop in income.

If the worker can bring a third-party lawsuit, then it is sometimes possible to receive full compensation for lost wages. You might also qualify to receive money damages for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of consortium. You cannot receive damages for these intangible losses through the workers’ compensation system.

How Will You Know if You Have a Valid Third-Party Claim?

Most workers don’t know. All you might know is that something exploded in your face or caused you to fall several levels, leading to serious injuries. In pain, you are not in great shape to investigate your case to determine if you can sue.

This is where a Manhattan construction accident lawyer can be helpful. Your lawyer can investigate the accident and identify whether hazardous equipment or another defect at the job site is ultimately responsible. Your attorney can also discover whether the defendant has sufficient insurance or assets to make a third-party claim worthwhile.

Call Us Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation with a New York Construction Accident Attorney

Lipsig, Shapey, Manus & Moverman is one of the oldest injury firms in New York City. We trace our roots back almost 80 years. With our experience, we are well-positioned to help you maximize your compensation after a construction accident. Call us today, 212-285-3300, or complete our contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.

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