Those employed in the constitution industry have a challenging and dangerous profession. Although local, state, and federal guidelines and regulations require employers to maintain high levels of safety and security for worksites to ensure employee safety, accidents can happen. If you or a loved one has sustained an injury while working in the constitution industry, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation. Our experienced construction accident attorneys at the Law Offices of Kropach & Kropach are here to help.
In California, construction accidents are more common than you think. According to a report on fatal injuries conducted by the State of California Department of Industrial Relations (CDIR), 17% of all fatal occupational injuries that occurred in the state between 2013 and 2019 were in the construction industry. The total number of fatalities that occurred within that timeframe was 464. The majority of the fatal injuries occurred from falls, slips, or trips.
The construction industry also has some of the highest non-fatal injuries of any industry in California. According to CDIR, over 11,000 construction workers suffered non-fatal injuries in 2020, with over 3,600 between the ages of 35 to 44.
Whenever a construction worker experiences an injury while on the job, the worker should never panic; suppose you are injured while on a job site. You should always seek immediate medical attention and inform a manager or supervisor of the incident.
Injuries from a constitution-related accident can include:
Each state has different statutory requirements for filing and litigating a workers’ compensation claim. In California, an injured employee has 30 days to report any workplace accident to their employer. Once you have provided the employer notice of your accident, you have one calendar year from the date of your report to file a workers’ compensation claim. Failure to timely file a claim may likely result in your claim being time-barred and ineligible to seek compensation for your injury.
A worker who sustained an injury from a San Fernando construction accident may be entitled to several forms of compensation under California’s workers’ compensation law, including:
It is very wise to hire a workers’ compensation attorney representing clients in the San Fernando Valley and surrounding areas when seeking compensation after a construction accident. The following are several ways in which a lawyer can assist you:
Proving that your accident was work-related
Most people who file workers’ compensation claims do not have significant experience coordinating with insurance companies. They may, therefore, not realize that insurance companies are not necessarily incentivized to provide them with the full amount of compensation they deserve.
You must remember that insurance companies are profit-driven businesses. If an insurer can find a reason to deny a claim, they will often do so to avoid paying you.
You are only eligible to recover workers’ compensation benefits if you were injured while operating as an employee. To better understand this concept, consider the following example: Perhaps you are on your lunch break, and you are driving to a nearby restaurant. If you are injured in an accident during this time because you are not technically driving for work, you likely will not be able to recover workers’ compensation benefits.
That is a pretty transparent example of an accident outside work hours. However, there are instances when it is unclear whether an accident qualifies as work-related.
In these circumstances, it is common for insurance companies to suggest that claimants are not eligible to recover workers’ compensation benefits because they were not genuinely injured on the job. Suppose an insurer falsely states they don’t need to pay you by inaccurately suggesting that your accident occurred when you were not operating as an employee. In that case, a lawyer can demonstrate why this argument is baseless.
An insurance company may not be able to justify denying your claim outright. Even so, an insurer will likely convince you to settle for less than you may deserve when the full extent of your losses and injuries is accounted for.
This is another reason it is helpful to have representation from a qualified San Fernando Valley construction accident attorney. A lawyer will calculate how much compensation you may deserve by factoring in all your compensable losses. If an insurance company’s initial offers are unreasonably low, your lawyer will reject them and negotiate for a more appropriate settlement on your behalf.
Filing a third-party claim or lawsuit
There are certain limits to how much money workers’ compensation benefits may provide you with. Suppose workers’ compensation benefits are not enough to fully make up for all your losses associated with a work-related accident. In that case, it may be possible for you to recover additional compensation if it can be shown that your accident resulted from the negligence of another party.
Identifying who this party is and gathering evidence proving they were negligent in a manner that caused your injuries will likely require conducting an investigation. Your lawyer can investigate your accident for you, allowing you to focus on your recovery.
If you or a loved one needs a San Fernando Valley construction accident attorney, contact the Law Offices of Kropach & Kropach for assistance today. Our experienced San Fernando Valley construction accident attorneys can help investigate the facts of your accident and provide options for the next steps to address your injury.