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The Many Possible Defendants in Construction Accident Cases

In construction accidents there are usually many potential defendants who could be found all or partially responsible for the accident. This is well demonstrated in the report of a fatal construction accident which occurred at a Miami high-rise condominium project in 2008. In that incident, two workers were killed and five others were injured when a large part of a construction crane fell about 30 floors down from the top of the luxury condo tower at Biscayne Bay. The accident apparently happened when employees of subcontractor Morrow Equipment Co. were trying to raise the crane section to extend its reach and that section broke off.

Workers injured or killed in construction accidents, such as the one in Biscayne Bay, often find that it can be a complicated matter to determine who is responsible for the accident. Depending on the particulars of the case, the responsible party could be nearly anyone, including:

  • The property owner or developer
  • The general contractor or manager
  • The subcontractor
  • The plaintiff’s employer
  • The manufacturer of equipment or machinery used in the construction

Construction accident cases often require extensive investigation and a thorough review of the parties’ contracts which each other. Any claim against the injured worker’s employer will likely be limited to a workers compensation action. Under Florida law , when there are several liable parties, each party is responsible for only their percentage of fault. Often one contractor can be held legally responsible for the actions of another contractor based upon the party’s agreement. There are also construction accidents where the plaintiff’s award will be reduced by the percentage their negligence is found to have contributed to their own accident.

If you have been injured in a construction accident, an attorney from the Law Offices of Cohn & Smith, P.A. can help identify the responsible parties and work for you to obtain the compensation to which you are entitled.

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