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Why Hire a Scaffold Accident Lawyer

The Doan Law Firm represents those injured by scaffolding collapse and similar construction industry accidents

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) estimates that one in three accidental injuries occurring on construction industry job sites involves scaffolding, with sudden scaffolding collapse ranking second only to falls from height as the cause of work site injuries and deaths. As is the case with many other worksite injuries, many scaffolding accidents are due to negligence in scaffolding assembly, use, or disassembly.

At The Doan Law Firm, we represent workers who have been injured in scaffolding accidents as well as non-employees who have suffered injuries due to the negligence of construction, maintenance, and renovation companies.

Causes of scaffolding accidents

There are many situations that can cause a scaffolding accident. Many of those causes fall into one of several overlapping general classifications such as:

  • Improper scaffolding assembly: On many job sites scaffolds are assembled by the workers that will be using the scaffold after it has been erected. Thus, scaffolds may be assembled with more attention paid to making life easier for workmen than to safety concerns.

  • Use of substandard or damaged scaffolding components: Scaffolding manufacturers rate the strength of scaffolds by the weight that the scaffold is designed to support under “ideal” conditions. If a scaffold is used under typical job site conditions such as on an uneven surface or on frozen ground, it may become unstable after it has been erected and lead to a partial or complete collapse.

  • Excessive loading: Scaffolds are designed to bear a maximum weight which should never be exceeded. Weight in excess of that amount can create a safety hazard and the possibility of causing injuries in the event of a scaffolding collapse.

  • Contact with electric power line: Scaffolding should never be erected near electric power lines. If this situation cannot be avoided, electrical power should be interrupted while workers are present on scaffolding that is near a live power line.

Liability in scaffolding accidents

In law, everyone from a private citizen to multi-national corporations is held responsible for the consequences of their actions. This is particularly true on construction sites where the conduct of one worker or a contractor can pose a significant risk to the safety of others.

In most states, the legal doctrine of strict liability will apply to scaffolding accidents. This principle holds the individual or a business that owned, or had control of, a scaffold to be liable for the consequences of a scaffolding accident without requiring the injured party to prove that negligence was involved.

Scaffolding Injuries and Worker’s Compensation

If you are injured while “on the job,” you are legally entitled to receive Worker’s Compensation benefits.

Although each state administers its own Worker’s Compensation program, if you are injured as a direct result of your employment you can expect to receive:

  • Payment of all medical expenses that are necessary to treat your injury and to restore you to your pre-accident health status
  • Any modifications to your home or living space that are required to accommodate your physical condition following your injury
  • A percentage (usually 50 – 60%) of your average weekly wages to be paid while you are unable to perform your usual job duties because of your injury
  • Vocational rehabilitation / retraining if your injury makes it impossible for you to return to your previous occupation

The only requirement to receive Worker’s Compensation benefits is that you must have been injured while you were at work. You do not have to file a lawsuit to force your employer to assume responsibility for expenses that are directly related to your injury since Worker’s Compensation is, by law, considered to be a “no fault” insurance system. In simplest terms, no fault insurance means that you do not have to prove that your employer’s negligence caused your injury nor can your employer deny you benefits by claiming that you were injured by your own carelessness.

The “downside” of Worker’s Compensation is that you cannot file a lawsuit against your employer regarding the circumstances of your injury. This means that, even if your employer was grossly negligent, when you file a Worker’s Compensation claim you are giving up your right to sue your employer to recover damages related to your injury.

There are certain well-defined situations where it is possible to file a lawsuit despite the fact that an injured worker is claiming Worker’s Compensation benefits. Since these situations are highly technical from a legal point of view, these exceptions are best discussed with a lawyer who is familiar with your state’s Worker’s Compensation law.

Contact a scaffolding injury lawyer

If you or a family member were injured as a result of a scaffolding collapse or similar accident, we invite you to contact the scaffolding accident injury lawyer at The Doan Law Firm, a national personal injury law practice with offices in major cities throughout the country.

When you contact the scaffolding accident lawyer at The Doan Law Firm, you first consultation and case review is always free of charge and does not place you under any obligation to hire our firm as your legal counsel. If you decide that we should represent you in court, we are willing to assume full responsibility for all aspects of preparing your scaffolding accident injury case for trial in exchange for a percentage of the final settlement that we will win for you.

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Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer

  1. After an accident, the responsible party's insurance company may try to reduce the claim amount. Commonly, insurance adjusters are trained to get information from the injured to assist in reducing the claim. Though some insurers are less guilty of this practice than others, it is important to realize that insurance companies are profit-oriented corporations and reducing claims results in increased profits for shareholders. This can create a situation for the injured in which they are offered a settlement that does not truly reflect the damages suffered. If you accept this settlement, you lose the ability to get more money should your injuries require further medical treatments. It is critical that victims get legal assistance in any personal injury case, and The Doan Law Firm is prepared to fight relentlessly for your rights.
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