If you have been injured in a workplace accident, knowledge is power and it is important to have an advocate representing your interests who is knowledgeable, experienced and capable. In order to ensure that you are not taken advantage of and that you receive all of the benefits and compensation that you are entitled to, you must first determine who is at fault for your injuries and whether you can prove fault.
The process of discovery, or in other words, an investigation is the most critical part of the legal process and it is important to understand how a qualified attorney would go about evaluating your case and compiling the facts.
Gaining Access to the Scene of the Accident
Initiating an investigation early will give your attorney the best chance of gathering important and relevant evidence and delaying the investigation only increases the likelihood of evidence being lost. A capable construction site accident lawyer will seek access to the scene of the accident as early as possible and may rely on the opinions and expertise of those who specialize in accident reconstruction. Any evidence or testimony that will establish cause or fault will be gathered and documented during this initial process.
Establishing Fault on the Responsible Parties
There are numerous ways in which liability or fault can be established and multiple parties may have contributing influence in the events leading up to an accident. The following forms of liability or causes of an accident are evaluated when an attorney performs his or her investigation.
- Negligence— any act or failure to act that breaches a person’s duty of care is considered negligence. The duty of care is simply what a responsible person in the same position would do or refrain from doing under similar circumstances. It is important to note that intent has no bearing on negligence and someone can make an innocent mistake and still be considered negligent.
- Vicarious liability— the actions of employees reflect upon their employers and businesses can be held accountable for the actions of their employees, especially if those actions are reflective of company policy.
- Product liability— defective tools, machinery or equipment may be the cause of an accident or a contributing factor in causing an employee to commit a negligent action. When this is the case, the manufacturer can bear some or all of the liability for the accident that ensues.
- Adherence to laws and standards— far too many accidents are simply symptoms of a company’s failure to follow safety laws or enact safety standards mandated by OSHA. Discovering these violations can help establish cause and fault while simultaneously providing the hard evidence needed to win your case.
Working with your Employer and Insurance Carriers
While performing an investigation of your construction accident, your attorney will work with both your employer and any insurance carrier who has a stake in the outcome of the investigation. If an insurance company has paid a claim or made a payment to your medical providers, this claim may impact the value of your settlement, as the insurance company will seek to recover its costs in the event you receive damages.
It is also important to understand the terms and limits of your worker’s compensation benefits so that you do not inadvertently do anything that would hurt your ability to file a claim or reduce the amount of compensation you are owed and an experienced attorney will help you avoid all of the legal pitfalls that stand to diminish the value of your case.
The Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers are an established and reputable law firm that has a track record of success representing workers who have been injured on the job and would be happy to answer your questions about your rights and legal options during a free consultation. It is important that you act quickly in order to allow us to gather all of the information vital to building your case and increasing its value. We will be happy to evaluate your case risk free and because our lawyers only collect payment upon successfully securing compensation on your behalf; if we are unable to help you then our services are free.