Construction work in Texas goes on year-round. Whether we encounter orange barrels during our daily commute, are building our dream home or see a high-rise being built from the ground-up construction work is a common sight throughout Texas. However, construction work can be dangerous work. If you are injured or lose a loved one in a construction accident you will want to know what your options for compensation are.
Statistics on construction worker injuries are grim
The statistics surrounding workplace injuries in the construction industry are startling. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health reports that in 2019, 11.4 million people in the U.S. worked in the construction industry. However, the construction industry is not always a safe industry. In 2019, 991 people lost their lives on the job in construction accidents. Falls were the primary cause of fatalities, followed by struck-by incidents, electrocutions and caught-in/between incidents. These are only fatalities; thousands of construction workers are injured on the job every year as well.
Is filing a lawsuit an option following a construction accident?
In general, when a person in Texas is injured or killed on the job, they or their families are compensated through the state’s workers’ compensation system. Worker’s compensation benefits cover healthcare costs and partial loss of living wages until a person is well enough to work again. If a construction worker is killed on the job, their survivors may be eligible to seek death benefits through the Texas workers’ compensation system.
However, can you file a lawsuit following a construction accident? While generally employers participating in the state’s workers’ compensation system cannot be sued, if the construction worker’s injury or fatality was due to the negligence of a third party, that third party may be held liable for the damages suffered. A third party commits negligence if they owed the plaintiff a duty of care, which was breached, which caused the damages suffered and but for the negligence the damages would not have happened, and that these damages are compensable.
Seeking help if you are involved in a construction accident
While construction work can be a rewarding occupation, it presents dangers that workers in other industries generally do not face. If you are injured in a construction accident, you may be left with many costs that you have no means to pay for, such as medical bills, expenses due to lost wages and pain and suffering. It is important to explore all your options for compensation, so you can be made whole again.