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May 5th, 2012

I was injured at a construction site in Pennsylvania, what rights do I have to recover for my injuries?

I was injured at a construction site in Pennsylvania, what rights do I have to recover for my injuries?

Answered by a Pennsylvania work accident and injury lawyer

Workers who are injured on construction sites or worksites in Pennsylvania generally have two avenues to obtain financial recovery. First, under Pennsylvania law, injured workers can make workers’ compensation claims and obtain medical care and indemnity which generally pays a percentage of lost wages. Second, there may be viable claims against other non-employer parties whose negligent conduct caused the accident. These claims are brought under tort or injury law. Because each case is unique, it is important to speak to a qualified Pennsylvania work accident and injury lawyer who can review the facts and offer advice on how to proceed.

Due to the nature of activities, construction accident injuries can be severe and often include:

  • head trauma,
  • crushed limbs,
  • broken/fractured limbs,
  • spine injuries,
  • burns,
  • loss of a limb, and
  • scarring/disfigurement.

For example, a forklift operator accidentally strikes another worker on a commercial construction site. The injured worker suffers devastating crush injuries to his arm and leg. He needs extensive reconstructive surgeries and is unable to return to work due to permanent limitations caused by the injuries. Here, the injured worker has both a workers’ compensation claim and a legal claim against the forklift operating company.

Filing an Injury Lawsuit After a Construction Accident in PA

Construction sites can be quite hectic places, especially commercial construction projects. At any given time, there may be numerous companies and contractors at work. When any one of these parties commits negligence, the consequences can be severe and catastrophic. Of course, Pennsylvania’s workers’ compensation law would allow an injured worker to recover for lost wages and medical bills. However, pain and suffering damages cannot be paid via a workers’ compensation claim. Instead, such damages can be awarded in a “third party” lawsuit (injury lawsuit) against a person or company whose negligence caused the accident. Common defendants in these “third party” construction accident cases include:

  • contractors,
  • subcontractors,
  • owners,
  • architects, and
  • product manufacturers/distributors.

The key in these cases is proper investigation in a timely manner. Oftentimes, by the time an injured worker consults with a work injury lawyer, too much time has passed, and valuable evidence has been lost. It is crucial to investigate the cause of the injury as soon as possible after the injury occurs. This ensures obtaining evidence like pictures, witness statements, etc. Prompt, proper investigation is crucial and may make all the difference in your case.

Related: What is the Statute of Limitations for a Wrongful Death Work Accident in Pennsylvania?

To submit your case for review by our Pennsylvania and New Jersey construction site accident lawyers, call (866) 641-0806. With offices in four states, our attorneys have the ability to handle cases throughout the Northeast area. Our lawyers are available for a free, no obligation legal consultation, and can obtain special admission in other states, such as New York or Delaware, on a case by case basis.

Disclaimer: This website does not provide legal advice.  Every case is unique and it is crucial to get a qualified, expert legal opinion prior to making any decisions about your case.  See the full disclaimer at the bottom of this page.

Last updated: February 2, 2015