Colburn Law

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Colburn Law

Seattle Construction Injury Attorney

Construction is a rewarding profession, but it’s also one of the nation’s most dangerous. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, certain jobs within the construction industry – namely, roofing, structural engineering and welding – are some of the most injury prone professions (behind only commercial fishing and logging). Construction workers work with heavy machinery, up high on scaffolding, and deep within trenches. They also work year-round, which can lead to dehydration or heat stroke.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets minimum standards for employers and requires them to provide a safe place to work. In spite of these standards, construction workers can – and do – incur injury on job sites every day.

If you’re a construction worker and you recently sustained an injury on a construction site, you have a few available options for legal recourse:

Filing a Claim With the Industrial Insurance Program

Washington’s workers’ compensation program is also called the industrial insurance program. This compensates workers for injuries by providing the funds to pay for medical bills and lost wages. If you sustained an injury on a job site, immediately inform your employer so they can begin the industrial insurance paperwork. They may tell you to use an approved in-network provider, but seek appropriate medical care and tell the provider you were injured at work.

The industrial insurance program is a no-fault system, which means you won’t have to prove your employer was responsible for your injuries. On the other hand, you are also limited in your ability to pursue additional civil action against your employer. In exchange for collecting benefits, you forfeit your right to pursue damages for pain and suffering.

Other Civil Actions

Unfortunately, an industrial insurance claim will only provide a portion of your lost wages, in addition to compensation for medical bills. Workers might find it difficult to stay afloat while receiving benefits, which is why many look for additional forms of legal recourse. In certain situations, injured construction workers may be able to file a civil lawsuit against a third party.

Anyone who works in the construction industry knows it’s an intricate system of moving parts – the contractor hires subcontractors, and those subcontractors work with their own third parties and vendors. If one of these third parties caused your injuries, you may have legal grounds for a personal injury claim. Here’s a list of some situations in which you would be able to pursue a third-party accident claim:

  • A subcontractor failed to safely assemble scaffolding
  • A truck driver failed to check their blind spot
  • A subcontractor exposed the worksite to a toxic substance, like asbestos
  • A work trench collapsed because a vendor negligently installed barriers

Types of Construction Injuries in Seattle

  • Burn injuries
  • Construction site motor operation
  • Falls
  • Crane injuries
  • Heavy equipment injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Trench wall collapses
  • Explosions

For More Info: Steps To Take After a Construction Site Injury

Product Liability Concerns

In other situations, you may be able to collect compensation because a product malfunctioned or didn’t work as intended. Examples include a negligently manufactured safety harness or a malfunctioning welding tool.

Contact a Seattle Construction Accident Lawyer

Colburn Law has handled many construction accident claims in Seattle by workers who were negligently hurt my contractors. If you need help filing your industrial insurance claim, or believe you have legal grounds for a third-party civil action, contact us to schedule a free initial consultation.