Chicago Construction Accident Lawyer

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The construction industry is vital to economic life and prosperity in Chicago. Construction is also a dangerous job; one in every five worker deaths in private industry occur in construction.

If you are injured in a construction accident, a Chicago construction accident lawyer can help you pursue compensation to support your recovery.

Construction work does not have to end in tragedy, however. When workers are careful, properly trained and provided with working equipment and safety gear, accidents can be kept to a minimum. When site supervisors are negligent or don’t promote a culture of safety, accidents happen and people get hurt.

Connolly Injury Law: Protecting the Rights of Injured Employees

Anyone on or near a construction site can be injured in an accident. Employees have a much higher risk of facing this danger. When you are injured on the job, you need a personal injury attorney who understands the requirements of workers’ compensation, personal injury claims, and the specifics of the construction industry.

Chicago construction accident lawyer Mark Connolly is a former worker in the construction trades, a proud member of Laborers’ Local #4 who worked for years as a union laborer while earning his college degree. Now, as the founder and principal attorney of Connolly Injury Law, Mark combines his years of legal training with real-world experience in construction to help Chicagoland construction accident victims get medical care and financial help after an on the job injury, whether through workers’ compensation benefits or third-party claims of construction negligence.

If you’ve been hurt on a construction worksite in Chicago or Cook County and surrounding areas, call Connolly Injury Law for a free consultation, and find out how we can help you recover and get back on your feet. Our team has 15 years of experience in personal injury and workplace accidents. Whether you are an injured employee or a third party, we can help you determine the most effective way to get coverage for your damages. Our firm can fight for you to get the compensation you need to recover.

Handling the Full Range of Construction Negligence Cases in Chicago

Property owners, developers and contractors are all responsible for ensuring safe work practices by training and supervising workers, inspecting equipment and providing the necessary safety gear. When co-workers or the people in charge are negligent, innocent people get hurt. In these situations, injured parties can file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party. To hold an employee, employer, or other party liable for your injuries in a civil claim, you must prove the following:

  1. They owed you a reasonable duty of care.
  2. They breached their duty of care through negligent action or inaction.
  3. This breach caused the accident.
  4. The accident caused you compensable damages.

A personal injury or premises liability claim allows injured individuals to recover both economic and noneconomic damages.

Common Types of Construction Accidents

Bystanders, third parties on a construction site, and employees can be injured in a construction accident. There are many causes of these accidents, and they result in many types of injuries. Connolly Injury Law helps workers injured in any type of construction accident, including:

  • Scaffold collapses and other structural collapses
  • Falls from heights off scaffolding, ladders, cranes, stairs, machinery, and building floors
  • Broken ladders and other unsafe equipment
  • Getting struck by swinging, falling or rolling objects
  • Forklift and crane accidents, including back-overs, tip-overs, and collapses
  • Trenching and excavation accidents, including collapses, cave-ins and inadequate ventilation
  • Improper use of vehicles or machinery
  • Caught-in or caught-between machinery or equipment
  • Electrocution from underground or overhead power lines, ungrounded surfaces
  • Burn injuries due to fires, explosions, heated equipment or chemicals
  • Slips and falls on oily surfaces
  • Trip and fall over extension cords or unsecured tools or equipment
  • Toxic exposure to dangerous substances and chemicals, including paint, asbestos, and solvents
  • Improper safety instruction or procedure among employees
  • Corners cut by employers and companies
  • Lack of approved personal protective gear
  • Demolition errors
  • Improper training of employees when using equipment or dealing with chemicals
  • Property owners or inspectors who did not properly check for hazards
  • Improper storage of dangerous substances

An investigation of construction accidents is essential. In personal injury claims, it is necessary to determine the party who is at fault and, therefore, liable for the accident. In workers’ compensation claims, it is necessary to determine if third parties can be held liable. An investigation can also help in a workers’ compensation claim, as it allows an attorney to collect evidence of damages and work-related injuries if an employer contests the claim.

Recovery for Negligence, Workers’ Compensation, and Third-Party Liability

Employees on construction sites are covered by workers’ compensation just like employees in other occupations. When an injury occurs on the job, injured workers are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits – payment for medical care and wage replacement – without regard to who was at fault in causing the accident. This means that employees do not have to prove that someone was negligent, only that they suffered injuries.

In exchange for this no-fault guarantee of benefits, employees cannot sue their employers, even when the employer’s negligence was to blame.

Unfortunately, this guarantee of benefits does not always provide employees with the support they deserve. Connolly Injury Law maintains a robust Illinois workers’ compensation practice and can help you get benefits, even when the employer and their insurance carrier are underpaying benefits, terminating benefits prematurely, or wrongly denying your claim for benefits.

We can advocate for your need for appropriate compensation. Our team can investigate the incident for evidence to prove that the claim is valid under workers’ compensation.

Workers’ compensation only covers employees, yet many workers on a construction project have the status of independent contractors. Although independent contractors don’t get workers’ comp, they can sue for negligence when they suffered an injury that was not their fault.

Being successful in a negligence claim requires proving that another party was to blame. This party could be a co-worker, employer, property owner, and/or maintenance contractor. Personal injury attorney Mark Connolly has over a decade of experience proving both workers’ compensation and personal injury claims.

Sometimes, employees might have both a workers’ compensation claim and a negligence claim. This situation arises when the accident happens on the job but is the fault of some third-party not connected to the employer. In these situations, the injured employee can pursue both avenues for compensation, and Connolly Injury Law can help with both claims. Examples of third-party liability situations include:

  • A worker is injured in a car accident while picking up supplies, making deliveries, or traveling between job sites, or because a thirdparty drives onto the site and strikes the worker.
  • A worker is injured while performing construction on a third-party’s property, and the property had a hazardous condition that caused the accident unrelated to the construction work that was being performed.
  • A worker is injured by a defective power tool or piece of equipment that was defective when it left the factory or store shelf.

While an employee can file a civil claim in addition to a workers’ compensation claim, they cannot recover double their damages. Instead, the personal injury claim will recover the remaining damages that are not covered by the workers’ compensation claim. These include the remainder of lost wages and lost earning capacity that workers’ comp only partially recovers. It also includes noneconomic damages, which are not part of workers’ comp.

Damages in Workers’ Compensation Claims vs. Personal Injury Claims

A civil claim and a workers’ compensation claim recover different settlement values. It can be helpful to understand the various damages that you could be eligible for, depending on the unique circumstances of your accident.

A workers’ compensation claim can recover the following damages:

  • Medical costs needed to treat the injury or condition
  • Partial wages disability benefits, typically ⅔ an employee’s average weekly wages
  • Lost earning potential disability benefits, which can continue for many years
  • Vocational rehabilitation costs if an employee must switch employment
  • Death benefits for reasonable burial costs and payments for dependents

A personal injury claim covers:

  • Economic damages, which include medical costs, lost wages, lost earning potential, property damage, and replacement of household services
  • Noneconomic damages, including physical pain, mental suffering, disability, and loss of enjoyment of life
  • Punitive damages in rare cases when the actions of the at-fault party are especially egregious

An attorney can review your unique case to determine which claims you are eligible for and what is most beneficial for you.


Q: Who Takes the Most Blame for an Accident in a Construction Site?

A: In most cases, the manager or employer on the construction site is responsible for an accident, although many parties may be liable. The cause of the accident is very important when determining who is at fault. Some parties who may be liable include:

  • Property owners
  • Construction employees
  • An employer or manager
  • The construction company
  • Contractors or subcontractors
  • Third-party drivers on a road worksite
  • Manufacturers of faulty equipment or vehicles

An attorney is important for helping you investigate the cause and at-fault party in an accident.

Q: What Is the Definition of a Construction Accident?

A: A construction accident occurs when damage, injury, or death occurs on a construction site or during construction work because of unexpected incidents. These accidents can result in property damage, worker injury, bystander injury, and other harm.

Common construction accidents include:

  • Scaffolding collapse
  • Fire hazards
  • Heavy machinery accidents
  • Electrocution
  • Falls
  • Falling objects
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Exposure to dangerous materials or chemicals
  • Collapsing buildings or ditches
  • Explosions

Construction employees are at a much higher risk of these dangers than third parties who are less frequently on the worksite.

Q: What Is the Most Common Type of Accident in the Construction Industry?

A: Falls, or trip and falls, are considered one of the most common types of accidents in the construction industry. Falls on construction sites can be especially dangerous, as employees may be working on high scaffolding, ladders, or building floors. These locations may not have typical safeguards and may have loose debris or spills. Even a fall of several feet can result in broken bones, brain trauma, and other injuries. When employees are injured, they can file a workers’ compensation claim.

Q: How Often Do Accidents Occur in Construction?

A: According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2022, Illinois saw approximately 3,300 recordable cases of injury or illness in the construction injury, with 1,900 cases resulting in days off work, job relocation, or restricted work. There were 113,500 state-wide injuries and illnesses across public and private industries, 83,000 resulting in days off, relocation, or restriction. Construction makes up 2.91% of recordable cases and 2.3% of cases where workers were not working full-time.

Maximize Your Recovery After a Construction Accident in Chicago

Construction accident cases can be complex – the injuries are often severe, there may be multiple parties involved, the status of the worker as an employee or independent contractor may be complicated, and the cause of the accident might be in dispute. Trust your case to a dedicated Chicago construction accident attorney experienced in both workers’ compensation and personal injury claims to make sure your case is handled correctly and that you get the maximum recovery available.

In Cook County and throughout Chicagoland, call Connolly Injury Law for a free consultation at 312-780-0816. There’s no fee unless we win compensation for you.


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