Construction workers play a vital role in our local society and New Jersey’s future. There is a good reason Hackensack is called A City in Motion. Our growing community and all of Bergen County rely on construction workers to provide needed maintenance and infrastructure projects that benefit us all.
Every day, however, construction workers report to dangerous worksites. Construction site injuries are common and can even kill workers.
At The Reinartz Law Firm, we appreciate the risks these dedicated workers take to improve our community, and we are proud to protect construction accident victims’ rights.
How We Help Construction Injury Victims
Every year construction workers are killed or seriously injured at construction sites. If you suffered a construction site injury, you have certain legal rights. Construction accidents are complicated and may involve several parties and multiple New Jersey laws. Choosing a qualified Hackensack construction injury lawyer is crucial to protect your rights.
The personal injury lawyers at The Reinartz Law Firm have decades of construction accident experience working with injury victims like you. Because we are a small firm, we provide the personalized attention you deserve. However, we still have the resources to handle your case promptly and professionally.
We have built a solid reputation as tough negotiators who have recovered substantial payments from workers’ compensation insurance companies for our clients. We are also award-winning courtroom litigators who zealously advocate for the compensation our clients deserve. Our Hackensack offices are conveniently located in Court Plaza across the street from the Bergen County Justice Center.
Don’t wait to call for your free consultation.
2 Different Construction Accident Claims Explained
Construction accident injuries are more complicated than other typical personal injury cases. In a typical car accident or slip and fall case, it is easy to identify the responsible parties, and the injured person has only one course of action to recover their losses. Construction site injury claims can include workers’ compensation benefits and personal injury lawsuits. Depending on the circumstances, an injured construction worker may have the right to bring one or both actions to recover compensation from different parties.
1. Workers’ Compensation Claim
Your employer, the general contractor, and the subcontractors should have workers’ compensation insurance for construction worksite accidents. This coverage protects injured workers and helps them recover and return to work. An experienced construction accident lawyer can help you navigate the complicated workers’ compensation process.
Under workers’ compensation laws, you don’t have to prove negligent behavior. You only have to show that you were injured while doing your job. However, as explained below, workers’ compensation limits payment for your losses.
2. Third-party Construction Accident Lawsuit
If another party is responsible for your accident, you may be able to bring a third-party construction accident lawsuit for your losses. For example, the construction site owner may have created a dangerous condition, a scaffolding manufacturer may have provided a faulty piece of equipment, or an engineer may have designed a dangerous building that leads to your injuries.
Workers’ compensation laws do not apply to third-party personal injury cases.
To succeed in a third-party lawsuit, you will have to prove:
- The other person or company owed you a legal duty of care,
- They negligently or recklessly violated that duty, and
- Their actions or inactions caused your injuries.
Potential Compensation Depends on the Type of Claim
When workers’ compensation insurance is available, you can receive benefits without showing fault by your employer. You may receive compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and disability benefit payments. If you can bring a workers’ compensation claim against your employer or other responsible entity, you cannot also bring a personal injury claim against them.
However, you may bring a general personal injury claim if a third party contributed to your injury. Under New Jersey personal injury law, you can request a broader compensation range, including economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages include actual expenses that you can document through:
- Current and future medical bills,
- Current lost wages and future lost wages,
- The cost of medical devices such as a wheelchair or prosthetic,
- Physical therapy, mental health care, and more.
Non-economic damages are more difficult to calculate.
They may include:
- Pain and suffering,
- Emotional distress,
- Loss of a family relationship, and
- Other complicated losses.
The Reinartz Law Firm team will investigate and gather the necessary evidence to prove your losses and maximize your recovery through negotiation or litigation. We know how insurance companies and juries think, and we’ll advocate for you every step of the way.
Construction Accident Basics
The U.S. Bureau of Labor surveys private industry employers about workplace injuries. It found 75,800 non-fatal workplace injuries and illnesses in New Jersey in just one year. In other words, three out of every 100 New Jersey workers (3 percent) receive workplace injuries. While workplace accidents can happen at any job, construction sites present more hazards and injury opportunities than most other employment options.
Types of Construction Accident Injuries
Using heavy equipment and large machinery, working in high locations, and navigating around temporary, unstable environments can lead to serious or fatal injuries.
Common construction accident injuries may include:
- Broken bones, sprains, or amputations,
- Electrical burns,
- Harm from falling objects,
- Toxic exposure to chemicals, asbestos, or other harmful products,
- Concussions and traumatic brain injuries,
- Puncture wounds, and
- Wrongful death.
When to Contact a Construction Accident Lawyer
When a construction injures you, make emergency medical care and treatment your priority. However, understand your legal rights as soon as possible. You should quickly consult with a construction accident lawyer to learn how they can help protect you from the beginning of your recovery journey.
An attorney who understands workers’ compensation laws can serve as your valuable ally. Most workers’ compensation insurers require the injured worker to follow specific rules after an injury. If you miss one step or do not supply their required information, the company may deny coverage, and you will not be able to recover your losses.
Likewise, a personal injury lawyer must understand the intricacies of the court system and how to succeed at trial. In New Jersey, most personal injury lawsuits must be filed within two years of the incident. Usually, this Statute of Limitations is strict and not flexible. There are exceptions to this rule, and your case may have a different deadline. If you don’t file your lawsuit before the Statute of Limitations runs, you cannot seek compensation from the person or company that caused your accident.
When you meet with a construction accident lawyer at The Reinartz Law Firm, they will explain the specific details of your potential claim, who may be responsible for your losses, and the important deadlines that apply to your situation. We have vast experience dealing with insurers and the court system. We are here to help you recover the maximum compensation possible.
We’ll Fight the Insurance Companies to Protect You
After a workplace injury, an insurance company will contact you. The adjuster or representative will probably tell you that the company wants to work with you to ensure you are paid a fair amount for your losses. They may suggest a quick settlement to put money in your pocket immediately. Or they may offer a small amount of money to see if you will accept. They may also tell you that you don’t need an attorney because they are looking out for your interests.
Insurance companies are in business to make a profit, not to pay out claims. In a general personal injury case, they may try to pressure you into accepting a quick settlement before you fully understand the nature and extent of your injuries. The insurer may only offer to pay your out-of-pocket expense but offer nothing for pain and suffering, emotional trauma, or future losses. The adjuster’s job is to settle your claim as quickly as possible for as little as possible.
In a workers’ compensation situation, the adjuster may claim your injuries are not permanent or minimize how serious they truly are. The insurance company saves money if you don’t qualify for permanent disability. Also, as mentioned above, the insurer may try to deny your injury claim altogether if you don’t follow the strict workers’ compensation rules.
The construction accident lawyers at The Reinartz Law Firm are not afraid to take on overbearing and harassing insurance companies so you don’t have to deal with them. Instead, you can focus on your recovery, knowing that we will protect your best interests. We’ll explain what you can expect to receive and walk you through the entire process. Our goal is to ensure you receive fair payment for the full extent of your injuries.
How You Can Protect Your Rights After a Construction Accident
When you are injured on a construction site, necessary medical care is the first thing on your mind. However, you must also report your injury to your employer or the site manager to qualify for workers’ compensation coverage. They will probably provide a specific form the insurance company requires. You only have a short time to report your injury, so do this as quickly as possible.
After reporting your accident, contact a construction accident lawyer for further guidance and protection. At The Reinartz Law Firm, we offer free, no-obligation consultations where you can explain your situation and get answers to all your questions. If we represent you for your injury claims, you won’t pay attorney’s fees unless we recover compensation for you.
In the meantime, keep all medical records, including diagnoses, prognoses, treatment plans, and progress notes. Start a journal to document your accident recovery. Write about how you feel day-to-day, activities you can and cannot do, and other details that will help you remember everything you are going through. Also, keep track of all medical and personal expenses related to the accident.
Unfortunately, these cases can take time to resolve. Memories can fade, and details may disappear. That’s why it’s never too early to consult with The Reinartz Law Firm. We’ll use the important information you provide to help achieve the best outcome for you.
The Reinartz Law Firm Fights for Injured Construction Workers
After a construction site injury, you may feel like your world is turned upside-down. You need medical care and treatment, but how will you pay your medical bills if you can’t work? How will you pay your household expenses? What steps must you follow to apply for workers’ compensation benefits? Can you pursue someone other than your employer for your losses?
You have important questions. We have the answers.
We staff our law firm with dedicated legal advocates who will tirelessly work to protect your rights. He will negotiate with the insurance companies, help process your workers’ compensation claims, and file whatever is necessary to recover the money you deserve.
"Richard Reinartz represented my husband and I in a personal injury case. He was very professional and did an excellent job. Richard made it very easy to communicate with him via email, phone, texts. His assistants are extremely helpful yet Richard even answers the phone himself when he could! .He is obviously well respected by the insurance companies and other attorneys. We feel very fortunate to have had him on our side."
"Great service, efficient communication and a really easy to reach for any help and support along the process. He was very proactive and anticipated all my concerns. Always having my best interest at heart and found the best outcome for me. I would definitely use Reinartz services again, and recommend them. Excellent customer service at Reinartz Law Firm Personal Injury Lawyers! Thank you for the amazing support!"
"Richard Reinartz has been my lawyer since 2014 and has helped me out with a couple of workers compensation cases, a car accident and a family members personal injury. In my personal opinion he is a great lawyer, keeps you informed of how your case is going and which direction is going, he is aggressive with his abilities to get you the best possible outcome in the end, he is compassionate to your injury or the situation your are in to help you out. I would recommend my lawyer to anybody and I have."