Every year, the construction industry ranks near the top of the list for serious workplace injuries. Those who report to sites each day know the risks that come along with their jobs, but even the most cautious workers can simply be in the wrong place at the wrong time. If you suffer an injury that requires extensive medical care and results in missed time from work, you have to consult an experienced professional about your claim.
The law firm of Odegaard Kovacich Snipes has, for over three decades, provided aggressive representation and compassionate assistance to our clients. Our Billings, Helena, and Great Falls construction accident attorneys have an established reputation in the legal community for taking on the toughest injury cases and getting results. We have recovered over $300 million dollars for our past clients, making us one of the most successful law firms in Montana.
We have spent more than 30 years representing personal injury claims. Our lawyers have decades of experience negotiating complex and challenging civil lawsuits, as well as navigating workers' compensation claims in construction.
We have a reputation for obtaining record-setting results for clients. Our attorneys work hard to secure top results. We have plenty of courtroom experience and do not shy away from going to trial, if necessary, for a verdict.
We never charge legal fees unless we succeed in recovering compensation. Our Montana personal injury firm wants to help injured clients, not add to their financial burdens. You will pay nothing upfront, nothing for an initial consultation, and nothing if we do not win.
Construction is an extremely dangerous industry. Every year, thousands of construction workers suffer serious injuries in workplace accidents. As the victim of a construction accident in Montana, do not try to navigate your claim alone. Insurance companies may try to get the better of you during claim negotiations to convince you to take less than your case demands. Handling your claim with help from an attorney can prevent this from happening. Your lawyer can go up against insurance companies and powerful defendants on your behalf, advocating for your rights and for fair financial compensation while you spend time healing.
While combating insurance bad faith practices, your lawyer can also take care of many other elements of your claim. From naming the appropriate defendant to taking your case to trial, your injury lawyer can take steps toward justice and fair recovery for you. The attorneys at Odegaard Kovacich Snipes understand the nuances of construction accident law and how to get the best possible results for clients. Retain our firm for legal assistance to increase your odds of success. We will help you obtain fair results in any way we can.
Our lawyers are all experienced litigators. We know what needs to be done to prepare a claim for trial. If negotiations fail to lead to positive results, we will not hesitate to take your case inside the courtroom. Some of the different types of construction workers that we represent in workplace injury claims include:
While you may think that your case is fairly straightforward, there is an advantage to discussing your claim with an experienced work injury attorney. Because of a large number of workers present at a job site, it is possible that you may have claims against a third party as a result of your injuries.
Should you have third-party claims, this may significantly increase the compensation that is available to you. Our Montana construction accident lawyers will carefully review the facts of your case, as well as the situation at the construction site at the time the accident occurred. After we have performed a thorough analysis, we will help you understand what we can do to help with your claim.
While many on-the-job accidents can befall a construction worker, some are fatal more often than others. According to data from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), four accident types are responsible for the majority of all construction worker deaths in the U.S. The Fatal Four accounted for about 60% of all construction worker deaths in 2017. OSHA says preventing these four types of accidents would save 582 workers' lives every year.
Responsible for 39.2% of construction worker deaths in 2017 (381 people), falls are the main cause of death in this industry. Lack of fall protection in construction is OSHA's most commonly cited safety violation. Falls from scaffolds, buildings, ladders, vehicles, and platforms can cause life-threatening injuries.
Struck-by-object incidents. Objects falling and striking construction workers is the second most common cause of death in the industry (8.2%, or 80 deaths). Tools and materials striking workers' heads can cause catastrophic brain injuries, even if they are wearing helmets. Material securement measures can help prevent these incidents.
Contact with electrical components is the third most common cause of death, responsible for 71 deaths in 2017, or 7.3% of the total. Electrocutions, electric shocks, and electrical burns are often preventable with proper worker training, control of hazardous energy, and safety gear.
Caught-in/between. These accidents took 50 workers' lives (5.1%) in 2017. They refer to workers getting caught or trapped between objects, vehicles, materials, or equipment. Keeping a proper lookout, inspecting equipment for hazards, and repairing issues such as missing machine guards could prevent related injuries.
Construction's Fatal Four took a total of 971 lives in 2017. Aside from highway collisions, these were the leading causes of private sector worker fatalities in the construction industry. The most often violated safety standards corroborate the Fatal Four; they have to do with a lack of fall protection, hazard communication, hazardous energy, ladders, and machine guarding. This shows employers can often prevent the Fatal Four by obeying OSHA's rules and safety standards.
Liability in Montana construction accident lawsuits depends on the circumstances. However, in most cases, it is the injured worker's employer that becomes the defendant in a civil lawsuit. Employers always have a duty to protect their employees from accidents and injuries. A failure to adhere to this duty, resulting in harm, is negligence. The injured worker could recover compensation for an employer's negligence through a personal injury lawsuit.
A lawsuit can often lead to greater compensation for an injured employee than workers' compensation in Montana. While the workers' compensation program caps damages at two-thirds a claimant's lost wages, a civil lawsuit has the potential to reimburse 100% of lost wages, on top of damages such as physical pain, emotional suffering, and punitive awards. If you believe your employer caused your accident, do not accept a workers' compensation settlement before talking to an attorney. Once you accept a settlement, you cannot file a negligence suit against your employer.
Determining liability for your construction site accident requires asking four key questions. 1) Did the defendant owe you a duty of care? 2) Did the defendant breach this duty? 3) Did the defendant's breach cause your injuries? 4) Did you suffer specific damages because of the breach of duty? If you answered yes to all four, you may have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. The defendant could be your employer, a product manufacturer, a property owner, a coworker, or another party that caused your accident.
If a lawyer believes someone is liable for your construction accident, you may be eligible for an injury lawsuit. Filing a lawsuit against the responsible party could hold him or her accountable for your damages. It could force an employer or another party to change the way it operates to prevent similar accidents in the future. It could also lead to payment for your financial, physical, and emotional losses. Depending on the situation, you may be able to demand recovery through both a civil suit and Montana's workers' compensation system.
A third party is someone not directly involved in your accident, but who may have contributed to your injury. This could mean someone other than an employer or coworker in a construction site accident. Third parties in construction accidents could be equipment manufacturers, maintenance crews, property owners, subcontractors, or drivers. If a third party substantially contributed to your injuries, you may have grounds for a third-party claim. This is a civil lawsuit outside of the workers' compensation system in Montana. Workers have the ability to seek financial relief through both workers' compensation and a third-party lawsuit.
Third-party negligence could lead to a personal injury, product liability, premises liability, or wrongful death claim, in addition to a workers' compensation claim in Montana. The party who was negligent and the type of wrongful act will determine the correct kind of third-party claim. A third-party claim could result in additional damages on top of workers' compensation, such as awards for future lost earnings, physical pain and suffering, emotional distress, mental anguish, loss of consortium, funeral/burial costs, and punitive damages. While you cannot bring a lawsuit against your employer after accepting workers' comp, you can make a third-party claim.
Determining whether a third party contributed to your construction accident may take help from an attorney. Our firm works with investigators who can revisit the scene of your accident, interview witnesses, analyze police reports, and take other measures to get to the bottom of who or what caused your injuries. Then, we can help you file an injury claim against a third party, in addition to negotiating a workers' compensation award. Our lawyers can help you maximize your payout through every means available.
If we take your serious injury case, know that we will be working tirelessly to recover the maximum amount of compensation available to you. Contact Odegaard Kovacich Snipes today to schedule a free consultation at one of our Montana offices. We represent injured workers throughout Montana.
In some cases, the insurance company will cut corners in order to avoid compensating you fully. At Odegaard Kovacich Snipes, we will fight to help you get the largest settlement possible. Our Montana construction accident attorneys are focused on assisting those in need in their cases. You may even be able to seek compensation from other parties who are partially responsible for your accident! Don't hesitate to talk about third-party claims with an attorney at our firm.
It is critical that you work with an attorney who has the experience, knowledge, and skill to handle cases involving both commercial and personal vehicle accidents. And, it is critical you hire an attorney who knows, thoroughly, the injury laws in Montana.
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