With construction projects continuing to increase in Florida, the number of injured workers is also going up. While some construction sites where injuries occur are compliant with federal and local safety laws, many workers are still putting themselves at serious risk for an injury each day.
Usually, if a construction worker is injured on the construction site, they can receive financial compensation if they are injured, no matter who caused (or was at fault for) the accident. This includes subcontractors who were not hired by the property site owner directly in many situations.
However, it may be necessary to hire a construction injury lawyer to receive a fair amount of compensation for your injuries and damages. At Sternberg|Forsythe P.A., we are ready to fight for your rights and ensure you are fully compensated for the losses you incurred.
Understanding Liability in Subcontractor Injury Cases
There are a few different ways that a subcontractor may experience a serious injury when working on a construction site. Some of the most common causes of injuries include collisions with heavy machinery, hazardous substances, electrocution, and falling objects. All these things pose a serious threat to Floridians who work on construction sites as subcontractors.
Since this group of workers is at high risk for accidents and injuries, the law in Florida requires that all contractors and subcontractors in the construction industry have workers’ compensation insurance. If you are employed by contractors or subcontractors in Florida and suffer a workplace injury, then you may be covered to receive benefits from workers’ compensation coverage. Because this is no-fault coverage, the worker’s negligence does not impact the claim.
However, when contractors or subcontractors obtain this insurance coverage, it means they receive protection from personal injury claims filed when an employee has been injured on the job.
What Will Happen if No Workers’ Compensation Is Purchased?
While it is illegal in Florida, in some situations, contractors and subcontractors may not get the needed workers’ compensation insurance. If this happens, liability for an accident and injury will move up “the chain” to the next contractor responsible for the work being done.
One reason for this is because, under Florida law, employees and subcontractors are recognized when working with contractors to be part of the same enterprise or business. What this means is that eventually, general contractors can be held liable for injuries that are sustained on the job site. Because of this, it’s important for all contractors to request proof of valid workers’ compensation coverage from subcontractors.
An injured worker may be able to receive funds for accident-related medical costs, any lost income if they must miss work, and other damages that are caused by the accident or incident. While this is true, it is still smart to speak to a construction injury lawyer who has prior experience handling similar cases. If you don’t do this, you may accept a lower settlement and less compensation than you really deserve.
Understanding Third-Party Claims
Based on the cause of the injury, it may be necessary for subcontractors to file a third-party claim to receive the full compensation needed for a full recovery. For example, if your injury is determined to be the result of a defective construction machine, you can file a product liability claim or defective product claim against the equipment’s manufacturer.
If you file a third-party claim for an injury, you may be able to recover compensation for the following:
- All related medical bills that aren’t covered by your workers’ compensation benefits.
- Any loss of income or other work-related benefits workers’ compensation benefits don’t pay.
- Cases of pain and suffering when the accident occurred and while the victim recovered.
- Any permanent disabilities that occur because of the accident.
- Issues with daily activities and the ability to live a normal life.
- Serious burns, disfigurement, or physical scarring that has occurred from the accident.
Even though you may be able to recover financial compensation for emotional or psychological suffering by filing a third-party claim, usually, this isn’t coverage awarded in a workers’ compensation claim. The only exception is if a physical injury occurs and causes some type of psychological disorder. An example would be a traumatic brain injury that results in memory loss, a permanent disability, or the loss of function.
Contact our Construction Injury Lawyer for Assistance
Because it may be necessary to file a workers’ compensation claim and third-party claim, you need to hire an experienced construction injury lawyer. Our team is ready to help you recover the compensation you deserve if you are injured as a subcontractor on a construction site. We are here to help and ensure you get the desired results from your claim. Contact us today with your claim or to learn more about the services we offer.