| Read Time: 3 minutes | Labor and Construction Accidents
how to prove liability in construction accidents

Construction sites are commonplace in most major cities and even quieter residential areas. Though necessary, construction sites are often the location of severe accidents and injuries. Did you suffer injuries due to someone else’s failure to secure safety equipment or improperly operating heavy machinery?

As you recover from your injuries, you may wonder, What is negligence in construction? Knowing how to prove liability in construction accidents is the key to recovering the compensation you deserve.

While negligence in construction cases is more common than one might think, succeeding on a claim is challenging. Learn more about these accidents and what your attorney can help you recover in damages. 

How to Prove Negligence in Construction Accidents

With mounting medical expenses and an inability to work, injured victims often ask their attorneys, What is construction negligence? and Who is liable for my injuries on a construction site? Prevailing in a construction accident case requires proof of the wrongdoer’s negligence by establishing the existence of four essential elements:

  • Duty. A victim must prove that the defendant owed them a duty of care. For example, the construction company or the site operator has a duty to keep their construction site free of hazards that may cause harm. 
  • Breach. The defendant must breach this duty of care. Your attorney establishes this element by proving that the construction company knew about a hazard that put people at risk but did nothing to fix the problem. 
  • Causation. The breach directly caused a victim’s injuries. For example, a construction company fails to fix unsafe scaffolding, which causes a victim to suffer injuries. 
  • Damages. The victim must have suffered losses due to the breach.

Your attorney gathers proper evidence to establish the four required elements of a negligence claim and strengthen your demand for compensation. 

Common Causes of Construction Accidents

Construction sites are hazardous. Unfortunately, it’s not just construction workers at risk of injuries. Innocent people simply walking by a construction site are also at risk for injuries if workers or supervisors negligently secure the site from danger. The most common causes of construction accidents include the following: 

  • Falls from heights, including scaffolding and roofs;
  • The impact from falling objects;
  • Accidents with heavy machinery and other equipment;
  • Burns;
  • Electrocution;
  • Trench collapse;
  • Barricade accidents;
  • Forklift accidents;
  • Crane collapses;
  • Faulty railings and stairways;
  • Slip, trip, and falls;
  • Exposure to toxic chemicals; and
  • Inadequate safety equipment and training.

Construction accidents happen in many ways that are not provided for in the above list. Determining the cause of a construction accident will help your attorney identify the party responsible for your injuries. 

What Can I Recover in Damages?

Proving negligence in construction cases permits victims to recover compensatory damages through economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages stem directly from an accident and represent financial losses, including:

  • Medical expenses, 
  • Lost wages, 
  • Loss of future earnings, and 
  • Property damage. 

Using documentation gathered from their client, an attorney calculates the value of these losses and uses this evidence to support their demand. It’s often more challenging to prove noneconomic damages, however, but they are just as important to recover in any construction accident. These damages include the following losses:

  • Pain and suffering, 
  • Emotional distress, 
  • Loss of consortium,
  • Loss of enjoyment of life, 
  • Permanent disability or injury, and 
  • Permanent disfigurement.  

Compensatory damages are awarded to help make a victim whole after suffering losses due to someone else’s negligent conduct. New Jersey does not cap these types of damages.

Courts may also award punitive damages in certain circumstances. While compensatory damages are meant to make a victim whole again, punitive damages aim to punish the defendant and deter future behavior by others. New Jersey caps punitive damages at a fixed amount and may not exceed $350,000 or five times the amount of any compensatory damages, whichever is higher.

Contact Us 

At Glugeth & Pierguidi, P.C., we understand how hard it can be for you and your family following an accident caused by someone else’s negligence. We are a personal injury and medical malpractice firm driven by results, and we have recovered millions in judgments and settlements for our clients when they need them most.

With a combination of three decades of meticulously preparing cases and intelligent strategies to move cases through the justice system, the legal team at Glugeth & Pierguidi, P.C., has earned an impeccable reputation amongst their clients and legal peers for their commitment to excellence and proven results.

We know how an accident can change your life, and you deserve to recover the compensation you and your family need to move forward. Contact us today by phone or email to schedule a free consultation and get started.

Author Photo

David Pierguidi and Jared Glugeth understand how hard it may be for you and your family following an accident resulting from someone’s negligent actions. Get the medical treatment you need right away and then call our law firm at any time of day for answers to your questions.

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