The collapse of a building is equally as unexpected as it is traumatic. Whenever a building collapses, victims may experience serious and even fatal injuries. Regardless of the state of the building beforehand, it is more than reasonable to expect that it should never collapse while you are inside of it. If you have been hurt by a building collapse, you have the right to hold the negligent party responsible by seeking compensation.
Like many other areas of personal injury law, receiving fair compensation for your injuries can be a tough task It is important that you hire an experienced New York building collapse lawyer to help you navigate the difficult waters and pursue the compensation you may be entitled to.
At Shulman & Hill, we treat every client as though they are our only one. This allows us to tackle every building collapse case with eagerness and experience. We can provide compassionate representation to help you get back on your feet after a building collapse.
What Causes A Building Collapse in New York?
Due to the number of buildings and people within the city of New York, there are incredibly strict building codes and standards in place. These laws protect construction workers and anyone else working in or around a building.
Because of how rigorously New York enforces these standards, buildings rarely collapse at random. Instead, there are numerous severe factors that can contribute to the collapse of a building. Above all else, proper precaution and maintenance are essential for preventing a collapse.
Like other accidents, building collapse is almost always caused by some form of negligence. Below is a list of reasons that a building can collapse:
- Ceiling collapse
- Construction or demolition errors
- Defective building design
- Defective building materials
- Defective foundation
- Excessive weight for structure
- Fire damage
- Irresponsibly placed materials for construction
- Mold, rust, or water damage
- Snow buildup
Who Is Responsible For a Building Collapse?
Constructing a building is almost always a team effort. Not just by the construction team, but many other companies and organizations that are involved in the process. Unfortunately, this can make it tough to pinpoint who should be held responsible for a collapse.
Nevertheless, all parties associated with the building must follow their own set of responsibilities and laws set by the city, state, and federal government. Once the cause for the collapse is determined, it is much easier to find who exactly is financially responsible for the collapse.
The most common parties responsible for a collapse include the following:
- Defective materials or tools manufacturer
- Demolition teams
- General contractors
- Property owners
- Suppliers of the materials
The general contractors and property owners are often responsible for supervising and making decisions about the building or demolition. Because of this fact, they are often the people to start with when determining liability.
How Can I Pursue Compensation?
Building collapse often leads to serious and fatal injuries. Many people who experience the horrors of building collapse find themselves with serious medical bills, injuries, and even lost wages. This makes pursuing compensation ideal.
If you are still on the job, you can pursue workers’ compensation benefits from your employer. The New York workers’ compensation law allows for injured employees to get benefits for disability, medical expenses, lost wages, and survivors in the case of fatality cases.
Unlike lawsuits, you do not have to prove fault to gain access to workers’ compensation. This makes it much easier to avoid the complications that many victims face. Shulman & Hill can help you understand your options and rights and assess your case.
Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Another option is suing negligent parties responsible for the building’s collapse. Though people who were injured at work cannot sue the employer, you can file a third-party claim to seek other compensation. Building residents and bystanders are also able to file personal injury lawsuits in the case of a building collapse.
Filing a personal injury lawsuit can be much more difficult than filing for workers’ compensation. You must show who or what was responsible for the collapse. Though it may take much more time to compile a lawsuit, you may receive more compensation in the long run. Below are some costs that may be covered by the lawsuit:
- Emotional or physical pain and suffering
- Earning capacity loss
- Lost wages
- Medical bills
- Future medical bills
If you lost a loved one after a building collapse, you can also file a wrongful death lawsuit. This sort of lawsuit may account for the loss of their company, financial support, and more.
In New York, victims only have three years to file their personal injury lawsuit. For workers’ compensation, you must notify your employer within 30 days of the accident.
Because of time constraints, contacting a personal injury attorney right away can be a huge help. Attorneys can help you understand the process and make the best decision for you and your family.
Why Choose Shulman & Hill?
If you or a loved one have been injured by a building collapse, you may want to contact Shulman & Hill right away. Our lawyers are trained to handle these claims and fight for the fair compensation you may be entitled to.
In order to ensure that you seek fair compensation for your injuries, Shulman & Hill lawyers can work diligently to compile evidence, build a case, and take your case to the courtroom if needed.
Contact Shulman & Hill
By Choosing Shulman & Hill to represent your building collapse case, you will gain an ally that provides the attention and compassion you may need to make a full recovery. At our firm, we know that you may already be struggling with medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. To account for this, we work on a contingency-based model. This means that we can review your case for free. If we choose to accept it, we will not charge you unless we win. Contact us today for a free consultation.