September 16, 2019

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New York Construction Accident Law

New York City Law Firms

Construction is one of the most dangerous industries to work in. New York construction is particularly dangerous because of the great heights and close quarters typically involved. New York Labor Law provides protections that construction workers in most states do not enjoy, placing liability on general contractors and construction site owners for a number of safety issues.

Scaffolding Law

New York Labor Law Section 240 is commonly referred to as the scaffolding law, but it actually applies to more than just scaffolds, and includes injuries which occur on or are caused by:

  • Scaffolds
  • Ladders
  • Hoists
  • Stays
  • Slings
  • Hangers
  • Pulleys
  • Irons
  • Ropes
  • Blocks
  • Braces
  • Other similar devices

The scaffolding law holds general contractors and site owners liable for proper erection, maintenance, and safe use of scaffolding including the use of appropriate safety equipment. It protects workers injured by falls from scaffolding and other injuries which occur on and around scaffolding including injuries caused by falling objects as a result of safety violations.

New York Construction Accidents and Workers’ Compensation

If you have been injured in a construction accident in New York City, you may be entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits. In most situations, and even in construction accidents in most states, if you are eligible for Workers’ Compensation you cannot sue your employer for work-related injuries.

In New York, however, construction workers who can collect Workers’ Compensation can also sue for injuries resulting from certain safety violations on the part of their employers.

The Workers’ Compensation claim is an insurance claim, and you do not need to prove fault to receive benefits. You can start receiving those benefits quickly, and they cover your basic medical expenses and replace a portion of your lost income.

A personal injury lawsuit takes longer, but can pay far more than Workers’ Comp. In addition to the limited benefits you receive from Workers’ Comp, you can receive full, rather than partial, compensation for your economic damages and receive compensation for noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering.

Compensation for your New York construction accident injuries can include:

  • Past, current, and future medical expenses
  • Past, current, and future lost income
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Special equipment and home modifications to accommodate disability
  • Disability
  • Disfigurement
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Types of New York Construction Accidents

Scaffold and ladder accidents are not the only types of the serious accidents which can happen in construction. Common construction accidents include:

  • Crane accidents
  • Heavy equipment accidents
  • Accidents involving power or air tools
  • Electric shock
  • Welding accidents
  • Explosions
  • Falls
  • Structure collapse