A construction accident is an accident that occurred in relation to construction work or on a construction site. If the person who suffered the injury is employed by a construction company, they may need to file a workers compensation claim and a personal injury claim. If that person is not an employee of a construction company, they should file a personal injury claim. If the accident involved damage to personal property, the victim should talk to their attorney about what type of lawsuit to file. Negligence is a common basis for a claim.
The statute of limitations for a workers comp claim in Alabama is two years from the date of the injury or two years from the date of the last compensation payment. The statute of limitations for a personal injury lawsuit is two years from the date the person was injured. The exception is if the employee was under a contract for their work. Then the statute of limitation is six years from the date of the injury. The statute of limitations for a negligence lawsuit is two years from the date of the incident.
A person in a workers comp claim may be compensated for medical bills and lost wages. A person in a personal injury lawsuit may be compensated for medical bills, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity, and damages for pain and suffering resulting from the injury. A person in a negligence lawsuit may be compensated for the loss of the personal property.
Alabama does not require a company that regularly employs less than five employees to have workers’ compensation insurance coverage. The exception is if the company is in the business of construction or assisting on-site in the construction of new, single-family, detached residential dwellings. An independent contractor may not be eligible to file a workers comp claim. They will be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Types of Construction Accidents
Construction accidents cover a wide range of incidents, including falling from scaffolding or ladders, slip and fall accidents, exposure to toxic chemicals, and traumatic brain injuries. A construction accident can also involve vehicle damage, which will require the injured party to file a claim with their insurer. The injured party should retain their own attorney for the accident. They should provide information to their insurer only after talking with their own attorney first. What an injured party says about how the accident occurred can negatively affect a car insurance policy rate and a personal injury lawsuit.
Who Can Be Sued
A person who is injured in a construction accident should look to sue all the parties that may be responsible for their injury. This includes the company that hired them, the owner or caretaker of the property where the accident took place, and the driver of the other vehicle if the injury involved an auto accident. The injured party may also sue the manufacturer, supplier, or distributor of a defective or dangerous product that caused the injury. In some situations, the injured party may be partly at fault for the construction accident. Alabama has contributory negligence laws. These strict laws bar recovery for a party who was even 1 percent at fault for an accident.
Why Consult an Attorney
A personal injury attorney can help an injured party determine whether they want to prepare for trial or negotiate a settlement. They can also estimate the value of a claim, the injured party’s percentage of fault, and the likelihood of success of the lawsuit. An injured party or their family should organize documents relevant to the accident before consulting the attorney. It is a good idea to group documents by type, such as medical bills, and put them in chronological order. The injured party should be prepared to tell the attorney the story of how the accident occurred. If they cannot remember, they should tell their attorney. Then the attorney can request video or audio recordings and documents that show how the accident happened.
What to Do Next
An injured party should keep going to their regular medical appointments. They should follow their doctor’s advice about maintaining their health and mitigating damage. They should not engage in activities that might jeopardize their recovery. The injured party should refrain from using social media to post updates about their condition or leisure activities. The injured party should also ask their employer for new work duties that match their abilities as they recover. Having a local personal injury attorney review your case would be a necessary step to determine if you have a lawsuit to file.