Commonly Asked Questions about Construction Accident Cases
When It Comes To Construction Accidents, What Components Make Up For A Viable Case?
Most construction workers are aware of all of their rights and all of the regulations and protection that they are entitled to. Therefore, the first step for any on the job injury is for the worker to take pictures of what caused the accident or ask a co-worker to do it. If a laborer is injured by a fall because a scaffold or ladder collapsed or they slipped and fell on debris or were injured by an unguarded saw, they should ask a coworker to take pictures. The old saying that a picture says a thousand words is absolutely true and a picture is the best witness in any trial. All these workers now have cell phones, so it is very easy just to grab a cell phone and take a few pictures or a quick video. Documenting what happened is really the key to establishing whether or not there is a viable case.
What Is The Statute Of Limitations On These Types Of Claims?
The statute of limitations in general for a construction accident is three years. If there is a municipality involved, if the construction occurred on the municipality or on public lands, such as the city of New York or it was a municipal project in general, or a New York City Transit Authority project, the statute of limitations is a year and ninety days. However, you only have ninety days to file a notice to claim with the applicable authority. The other caveat is that on certain bridges, the thruway authority has to be filed with the court of claims as opposed to the New York Supreme Court. Also, a notice of intent to file claim has to be filed within ninety days and then the statute of limitations is two years. Thereafter, you have to then file an actual claim with the court of claims.
In the case of wrongful death, the statute of limitations in general is two years which begins to run from the time that the estate is appointed, which means that the surrogate’s court officially issues letters of administration to the next of kin or a personal representative of the estate.
Do These Cases Typically Take A Long Time To Resolve As They Are Quite Complicated?
Definitely. Almost all personal injury cases take a long time to resolve. The reason is that once a case is settled, it is settled. It is over, it is done. You cannot go back and ask for more. Typically, attorneys do not know how someone’s injuries are going to heal right after the accident. There can always be complications and sometimes, there is even medical malpractice or a failure to treat a particular problem or even failure to diagnose an injury right away. It is not uncommon for an injury to be missed initially and then found later on. Therefore, these cases always take a long time to resolve because attorneys need to know how well someone is going to heal if they are going to have a permanent, lifelong injury.
Attorneys also want to make sure before they settle the case that the injured worker is able to return to his normal work. If he is not able to return to his normal work, then they have to do an economic evaluation of what he can make now versus what he or she could have made had they not been injured. All these factors are reasons why these types of cases take a long period of time. Although in Westchester and Rockland Counties, cases tend to move a lot faster than in New York City.
If you need answers to Commonly Asked Questions about Construction Accident Cases, call the Law Offices of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC for a FREE Initial Consultation at (914) 574-8330 and get the information and legal answers you’re seeking.