Nobody wants to be injured on the job. However, if you are hurt at work, you should be compensated. Sometimes the only remedy for work injuries is through the injured worker’s employer in the form of workers’ compensation. New York workers' compensation law can offer injured workers the money they need to recover from their injuries. However, sometimes there are other avenues of relief for work injuries. When a third party (other than the employer or a fellow employee of the employer) is at fault, it may be possible to recover damages by bringing a personal injury lawsuit. The skilled Syracuse work injury attorneys at DeFrancisco & Falgiatano can evaluate your case to determine if you may have this sort of claim.Work Injuries
Work injuries can involve the back, the neck, the knees, the ankles, the legs, the hands, the arms, the spine, or the brain. Sometimes they are acute injuries, such as those sustained in a fall from a high surface on a construction site. At other times, they are repetitive stress injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. There are other times when defective machinery causes an accident.
Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system. You may be able to obtain benefits for on-the-job work injuries regardless of whether your employer is to blame for your injuries, or even if you are to blame for your injuries. However, workers’ compensation benefits are not as significant as personal injury awards tend to be. You cannot sue your employer to recover damages, and you will not be able to recover compensation for pain and suffering through a workers’ compensation claim.Third Party Claims
Depending on the facts of your case, you may be able to recover damages after a work injury by establishing the fault of a third party. A seasoned work injury lawyer in Syracuse can assess whether you may have this kind of claim. For example, if you’re working a construction site, you may face a number of different risks and some may be the responsibility of someone other than your employer, such as a subcontractor, property owner, supplier or manufacturer. While safety cannot always be guaranteed, there are situations in which these other parties should be held accountable for losses in a lawsuit.
Sometimes it’s possible, for example, to bring a product liability lawsuit against the manufacturer of a defective piece of equipment. You will need to establish that the equipment had an actionable defect, which means that it had a marketing, manufacturing or design defect. In New York, a plaintiff can pursue a product liability lawsuit under a theory of negligence, breach of warranty, or strict liability. To establish strict liability, a plaintiff needs to prove that the defendant is in the business of selling and actually did sell the product, the product was in a defective condition and was therefore unreasonably dangerous and caused the plaintiff injuries, and the product hadn’t been altered in any way from when it was sold.
When an accident occurs on a construction site, certain special laws will apply, and a knowledgeable Syracuse work injury attorney will be familiar with these rules. New York has labor laws that are intended to keep construction workers safe from injury, and that provide exceptions to the general rule that you’re restricted to recovering workers’ compensation benefits from your employer if you are hurt on the job. For example, Labor Law section 240(1) requires contractors and construction site owners to protect workers from gravity-related injuries by providing them with appropriate safety devices. New York Labor Law section 241(6) mandates that owners and others allow for a safe construction job site if excavation, demolition or construction is occurring by abiding by Rule 23 of the New York State Industrial Code.
Your employer shouldn’t retaliate against you for pursuing damages after being injured by violations of New York’s labor laws. Retaliation includes taking any adverse or discriminatory action against you (such as termination or demotion) for filing a lawsuit you’re entitled to bring under the labor laws of appropriate authorities.Consult a Work Injury Attorney in Syracuse
Work injuries can be devastating. If you have suffered after being hurt at work in Syracuse, it’s important to find a lawyer who will look at all possible angles of the accident. DeFrancisco & Falgiatano represents accident victims in Syracuse and Rochester, as well as Lyons, Cooperstown, Wampsville, Utica, Oswego, Canandaigua, Watertown, Oneida, Delhi, Herkimer, Norwich, Ithaca, Lowville, Auburn, Binghamton, and Elmira. Please call us at 315-479-9000 or contact us via our online form.