Falls From Scaffolds, Unstable Scaffolds and Scaffold Collapses
As every construction laborer knows, scaffolding is any type of temporary structure designed to support a worker or crew during the construction, maintenance, or repair of a building or other structure. There exist a litany of different kinds of scaffolds, ranging from hanging scaffolds to Baker’s scaffolds, that are used in different types of construction projects. Scaffolding allows workers to access areas that could not otherwise be reached to perform their important construction works. Since scaffolds are often used to reach very dangerous heights, however, serious injuries and even deaths can occur when a scaffold is unstable or otherwise unsafe. For this reason, the State of New York has instituted a very rigid regime of scaffold accident safety laws and rules to protect Bronx construction workers from suffering serious scaffold accident injuries. The Bronx scaffold accident lawyers at the Jesse Minc Law Group have substantial knowledge regarding the ins and outs of the construction trades, and know what they are talking about when it comes to scaffold accidents. We are knowledgeable about construction safety laws, and will teach you what your rights to compensation may be if you are injured if you call us today at (718) 354-8000. We stand ready to assist you if you have been hurt in scaffolding collapses and falls, as well as other construction site accidents, such as ladder falls or falls into holes or pits.
Under New York law, a person who is hurt on a construction site due to a fall from a scaffold, an unstable scaffold, or the collapse of a scaffold may have several legal remedies available to seek compensation for their injuries, as well as any lost wages and benefits occasioned by a Bronx scaffold accident. The most immediately obvious of these is a claim for workers’ compensation, which is available to any injured Bronx scaffold accident victim if they are hurt on the job. In workers’ compensation cases, the injured person does not need to prove fault on the part of their employer. Generally, all that is required is that the injured construction worker prove that they were injured as a direct result of their employment on a construction job site. Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance, through which benefits such as medical treatment and temporary or permanent disability payments may be sought. However, notice must be given to the claimant’s employer within a certain period of time to preserve the worker’s rights.Special Legal Protections for Scaffold Accident Victims Under New York Law
The New York State Legislature, as well as New York courts, have, over the course of the past century, developed a robust set of legal protections for Bronx construction workers who are injured in scaffold accidents on construction sites. The most important of these special legal protections applicable to Bronx scaffold accidents is actually called the “Scaffold Law”, or Labor Law § 240. Under New York Labor Law § 240(1), Bronx scaffold accident victims can hold owners and general contractors strictly liable if they suffer a “gravity-related” injury while using a scaffold that could have been prevented by the use of appropriate safety devices. For example, if a construction worker is standing on top of a scaffold doing pointing work, and one of the planks forming the platform on which the worker is standing breaks and the worker falls, he or she can file a personal injury lawsuit against the owner and general contractor of the job site and recover compensation. Injured workers can also successfully obtain compensation under the “Scaffold Law” if, for example, they fall from a scaffold and strike the ground because they were not provided with a safety harness or lifeline to prevent the fall. These cases often result in an award of far more compensation and damages than a workers’ compensation claim can ever provide. The “Scaffold Law” is also beneficial to injured workers because, to have a successful claim under that law, injured workers do not have to prove that anyone was negligent, but only that they were injured due to the effects of gravity and that a safety device would have prevented their scaffold accident. If the worker is successful in this type of claim, the employer or the workers’ compensation insurance company may be entitled to repayment for certain funds that it paid out for benefits like partial or total disability benefits or medical expenses. Contact our expert Bronx scaffold accident attorneys today to learn more about your rights to compensation if you are hurt in a construction accident involving any type of scaffold or fall from a height.
Liability for Bronx scaffold accidents can also be imposed against owners and general contractors of Bronx construction sites pursuant to New York Labor Law § 241(6). This special law provides that, if a construction worker injured in a scaffold accident can show that their accident was caused by a violations of Rule 23 of the New York Industrial Code, they can recover compensation from the owner and general contractor directly in a personal injury lawsuit. This includes failing to provide safety equipment that is required by law, as well as other safety code violations. For example, pursuant to New York Industrial Code Rule 23-5.1(b), all non-hanging scaffolds must be supported by sound footing, and that unstable supports for such scaffolds shall not be used. If a worker falls from a scaffold because it is not properly anchored to the ground and becomes unstable, causing the worker to lose his or her balance and fall off the scaffold, the worker can sue under New York Labor Law § 241(6) and use New York Industrial Code Rule 23-5.1(b) as a predicate to hold the owner and general contractor liable for his or her damages sustained in this scaffold accident. Unlike with respect to claims brought under the “Scaffold Law”, however, claims under Labor Law § 241(6) are not limited to “gravity related” accidents; and defendants in these claims can point to the injured worker’s own negligence to reduce the amount of compensation available in the lawsuit. Based in the Bronx, our expert scaffold accident attorneys will educate you about your rights to compensation if you are injured in a scaffold accident, and will hire the best engineering experts and safety experts to prove that the defendants – and not you as the injured worker – were responsible for your scaffold accident so as to maximize your available compensation at trial.Contact Our Expert Scaffold Accident Lawyers Today to Discuss Your Case
We have intimate familiarity with the various construction trades, and know very well that construction sites can be very dangerous places. Workers can be injured or even killed as a result of negligence or a contractor’s failure to follow safety rules, and when this happens, you and your family need aggressive construction accident lawyers to ensure that you obtain full compensation. Construction accident victims are often left so badly injured that they are unable to support their families. Especially in the case of union workers, who receive generous salaries and benefits for their labor, the worker and his or her family will never be able to recover from the loss of income and benefits if the worker cannot return to the construction trades, even if they are able to work in another field. If you or a loved one has been a victim of a New York City construction accident, the construction accident attorneys at Jesse Minc Law Group are here to help 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We handle many types of construction accident cases throughout the Bronx, Queens, Manhattan, and Brooklyn, as well as in Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester Counties. To schedule a free appointment to discuss a scaffold fall accident, a construction accident involving a falling object, or any other type of construction accident in NYC, call our expert scaffold accident lawyers at our Bronx office now at (718) 354-8000 or contact us online for a free consultation.