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Things to Consider When Hiring a Construction Accident Lawyer

An experienced Orlando construction accident attorney can help you navigate the steps you need to take after getting hurt in a construction accident.

Most people wouldn’t guess it, but every year, thousands of people are hurt in construction accidents across the country. The sad part is, most of them were preventable. In many instances, these construction accidents happen because of faulty parts, poor security, and negligence.

Dealing with dangerous equipment and materials that are so heavy means even a small mistake can have grave consequences. One slip-up and someone dies or is seriously injured.

If you or someone you know is involved in a construction accident, you need an attorney who can win you compensation to cover medical expenses, lost wages, and other costs.

Keep reading to learn more about why you need a lawyer and how to pick the right Orlando construction accident attorney for your case.

Construction Accidents Are On the Rise

Technology is improving at a rapid pace. Buildings go up faster than they ever have. Florida has seen a boom in construction activity over the past two decades, unlike anything we’ve seen before.

That rapid rise in economic growth, though, has seen its share of construction accidents.

In 2011, the Florida Department of Labor reported 48 construction-related deaths. In 2018, that number grew to 101 fatalities.

This statistic underscores the threat many people on or even around a construction site face. There are reasons why there is so much emphasis on safety training, certification, and safety standards.

Hiring a Construction Accident Attorney After an Injury or Death

A serious accident is a shock to the system. What was a normal day at work or out of the house suddenly becomes something devastating.

When a construction accident occurs, the first thoughts go to making sure everything is done to make people as safe as possible. People who need medical attention need to go to the hospital.

However, contacting an attorney needs to be a priority. Often, people make critical mistakes in the aftermath of a construction accident because they don’t know what they’re doing. The company or some other responsible party explains away what happened or convinces them to remove any liability.

A seasoned Orlando construction accident attorney will see through cursory attempts to make the accident go away. They’ll advise you and anyone else involved in the accident on what to do and who to see. They will also know how to preserve evidence before it is lost or destroyed.

Here are some things they can help with:

Getting the Right Medical Care

Documenting your injuries and the recovery process is vital to your personal injury case. An expert lawyer and the rest of your legal team should guide you to doctors, clinics, and therapists who can manage your condition. Medical evidence is a massive part of settlement negotiations and arguing a case successfully in court.

Assigning Liability

Don’t fall into the trap of self-blame after a construction accident. Too frequently, people question the actions they took and the decisions they made without analyzing external factors that contributed to the incident. Was there a faulty part that caused a crash? Were safety measures ignored? A lawyer will look at things like:

  • Job qualifications of people on-site
  • Whether there was any defective equipment
  • If there were sufficient inspections
  • Whether there was improper use of equipment

These are just some of the things an attorney will look at to discover who was at fault and how much liability they have in your case.

Communicating with Other Parties

A big part of what happens in a personal injury case happens well before things end up in court. Lawyers go back and forth and insurance companies make settlement offers. Your lawyer will handle all of that so you don’t have to deal with any of the stress of managing your case.

Negotiating Settlements – Do you know how much compensation you deserve for your injuries? If you’ve never successfully negotiated any construction accident settlements, then it’s hard to put a figure on injuries. Your lawyer should have a good track record of winning clients large settlements based on their injuries.  The more successful trial lawyers are in the courtroom, thebetter opportunity there is for  substantial settlement.  Insurance companies know who the lawyers are who litigate and try major cases.

How to Find the Right Orlando Construction Accident Attorney

If you look online searching for an attorney after a construction accident, you’ll see that you have a lot of choices. Florida is home to a lot of attorneys. However, finding the right one is the trick to a successful settlement.

Here are some tips on how you can find the right lawyer for your case.

Tip 1 – Look for a specialty

Good lawyers specialize because they know that building expertise in a certain area of legal practice is the right move. Look for lawyers who specialize in dealing with construction and catastrophic injury accidents. Even better, try to find someone who has represented clients in cases as similar to yours as possible. And look for a board certified trial lawyer, which is the highest professional recognition in the field and means that the lawyer is a true specialist (only board certified lawyers may represent themselves as specialists).

Having a specialty in construction cases means they will know how much you deserve in damages and how long things will likely take.

Tip 2 – Get a free initial consultation

Many law firms will offer no-obligation consultations to people to discuss the details of an injury and explore whether there is a case there. It gives you peace of mind knowing you don’t have to pay any fees upfront, and you and your lawyer can feel each other out to see if things will be a good fit.

Tip 3 – Ask About Past Settlements

An experienced Orlando construction accident attorney will be able to recite past cases and tell you settlement amounts. They should speak confidently about your prospects and instill confidence in you as to the plan going forward.

Tip 4 – Examine Their Background

These days, it’s easier to hire a good attorney than ever. There is more information online about cases and clients, and you can read reviews from other clients. Look at how active they are in their field, what associations they belong to, any awards they’ve received, and other notable accomplishments. Make sure the lawyer you choose tries cases to juries and has a track record, is well respected, and understands what your goals and needs are.

Tip 5 – Find Someone Who Fits

Perhaps most importantly, you need to hire a lawyer you will work well with. Ask prospective attorneys about their communication style, how often they’ll check in with you, and take note of how quickly they respond to your inquiries and how they speak to you. Construction accident personal injury cases can take years, potentially, so you need to be happy with a long-term partnership.

Tip 6 – Ask Them What You Should Expect

A good lawyer will set realistic expectations. Beware of anyone who makes things seem overly simple or promises you the moon. Construction accident cases can take a long time and there are a lot of details involved. They should be frank with you on things like your prospects for a successful case and what you can anticipate in terms of timelines. Many of these cases become complicated. The law is not simple and the insurance companies defending these cases are set up to drag them out and make them complex.

Winning Your Case with the Right Orlando Construction Accident Attorney

The law firm you choose to represent you in a construction accident case matters a great deal. It will have a direct impact on your settlement amount, and if you win in court if things go that far.

You or someone you love shouldn’t have to face the sometimes lifelong effects of a construction accident without compensation. There are medical bills, permanent disability, trauma, and other effects that take time and money. Recovery can take years.

Your legal team and their medical experts will help you project your immediate medical costs and what you can expect to pay in long-term medical expenses. It’s important to include future costs in any settlement negotiations.

And what if a construction accident is fatal? How will families deal with the permanent loss of income? What about the pain and suffering caused by losing a loved one?

When something like an equipment failure or security negligence kills someone, people need to be held accountable. The right lawyer will make sure that happens. Make sure your lawyer is skilled in wrongful death cases and knows the complexities of Florida’s Wrongful Death Act.

Be Ready to Go to Court

What happens in a lot of construction accidents is that the general contractor, equipment manufacturer, or some other liable party will attempt to settle the case quickly out of court. They’ll offer some measly sum to the injured and hope things go away.

A good attorney won’t let that happen. They’ll have years of settlement negotiations under their belt, and will be able to sniff out a rotten offer in no time.

However, aggressive negotiations sometimes fail, so you and your family need to be ready to go to court if it needs to happen. When a defendant denies a claim, litigation is usually the next step.

The stakes are high when things go to court. You need a legal team with litigation experience to prove who was at fault and fight for appropriate damages.

The lawyers at Leighton Law specialize in Florida construction accident cases, and we are committed to getting you the compensation you deserve. We offer no-obligation consultations to discuss the details of your cases and help you know the best next steps. Talk to us today and find out how we can help with your case.

Article by:

John Leighton

A nationally-recognized trial lawyer who handles catastrophic injury and death cases. He manages Leighton Law, P.A. trial lawyers, with offices in Miami and Orlando, Florida. He is President of The National Crime Victim Bar Association, author of the 2-volume textbook,Litigating Premises Security Cases, and past Chairman of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s Motor Vehicle, Highway & Premises Liability Section. Having won some of the largest verdicts in Florida history, Mr. Leighton is listed inThe Best Lawyers in America (14 years), “Top Lawyers” in the South Florida Legal Guide (15 years), Top 100 Florida SuperLawyer™ and Florida SuperLawyers (14 years), “Orlando Legal Elite” by Orlando Style magazine, and FloridaTrend magazine “Florida Legal Elite

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