What steps should I take after a construction accident injury to protect my rights in Texas?

Construction sites are inherently dangerous work environments due to the nature of the work. Nearly one in five workplace deaths occur in the construction industry, according to recent statistics by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. A staggering 38.4% of these fatalities stem from falls, slips, and trips. With almost half (47.4%) of all fatal falls happening in this industry, the risk of serious injury is significant. Texas, with its booming construction industry, sees a significant portion of these accidents.

If you’ve been injured in a Texas construction worksite accident, the aftermath can be overwhelming. Medical bills pile up, you might be unable to work, and the legal landscape surrounding construction accidents can be complex and overwhelming. However, immediately taking the right steps can significantly protect your rights and ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.

This blog outlines the steps you should take after a construction accident injury in Texas. We’ll delve into reporting procedures, evidence gathering, and the importance of seeking legal counsel from a qualified personal injury attorney.

1. Seek Medical Attention Immediately (It Matters!)

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s critical to seek medical attention right away, even if your injuries seem minor. We get asked all the time whether to report even a minor work injury and seek medical treatment and our answer is always a resounding, “Yes!” Adrenaline can mask the severity of an injury, and delaying medical care can complicate your case later. A doctor can diagnose your injuries, document their extent, and create a medical record linking them directly to the accident. This record becomes vital evidence when pursuing compensation.

2. Report the Accident: Don't Miss the Deadline

The reporting process for construction accidents differs depending on whether you’re an employee or a visitor on the site and whether the employer is a subscriber to the Texas Workers Compensation program.

  • Employees of Subscribers to the Texas Workers Compensation Program: Texas Labor Code Section 409.001 requires injured employees to report their work-related injuries to their supervisor within 30 days of the accident. Failure to report within this timeframe could jeopardize your eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits.
  • Visitors and Employees of Non-subscribing Companies: If you’re injured on a construction site as a visitor (e.g., delivery driver, inspector) or an employee of a company that is not a subscriber to the Texas Workers Compensation Program, report the accident to the site manager immediately. Document the incident details, including the date, time, and location of the accident.

3. Gather Evidence

The burden of proof lies with you, the injured party, to demonstrate the cause of your injuries and the resulting damages. Therefore, gathering evidence as soon as possible strengthens your case significantly.

Here’s what you can do:

  • Take Photographs and Videos: Capture photos and videos of the scene from various angles, including the location of your injury, any damaged equipment or materials that might have caused the accident, and any safety hazards present.
  • Collect Witness Statements: If anyone witnessed the accident, obtain their contact information and, if possible, their written statements describing what they saw.
  • Keep Medical Records: Maintain copies of all medical bills, doctor’s reports, and any prescriptions related to your injuries.
  • Document Lost Wages: If you’re unable to work due to your injuries, collect documentation of your lost wages, such as pay stubs or a letter from your employer.

4. Consult with a Texas Personal Injury Attorney

Texas construction accident cases can be complex, often involving multiple parties and complicated liability questions. For instance, determining who is responsible for your injuries can be challenging. It could be your employer, or the fault could lie under third-party liability: a subcontractor, a manufacturer of faulty equipment, or even a third-party property owner could be held liable for your injuries.

While workers’ compensation provides some financial relief in some instances, it may not fully cover all your losses or any of your losses. Third-party liability claims can help recover additional compensation for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and lost future earning capacity.

Texas also follows a comparative negligence system, so if you’re found partially responsible for the incident, it can affect your compensation. An experienced attorney can help navigate these complexities and fight for the maximum compensation you deserve.

A qualified personal injury attorney with experience in construction accidents can:

  • Investigate the Accident: Your attorney will thoroughly investigate the cause of your accident, identify potentially liable parties, and gather additional evidence to support your claim.
  • Negotiate with Insurance Companies: Insurance companies representing liable parties will try to minimize their payouts. An attorney can negotiate on your behalf to ensure you receive fair compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
  • File a Personal Injury Lawsuit: If negotiations with the insurance company fail to yield a fair settlement, your attorney can file a personal injury lawsuit in a Texas court to recover the compensation you deserve.

5. Keep Detailed Records: Every Penny Counts

In the aftermath of a construction accident, medical bills can quickly pile up, and lost wages can strain your finances. Detailed records serve as concrete evidence of the financial impact your injuries have had on your life. When negotiating a settlement with the insurance company or presenting your case in court, these records will be essential in demonstrating the extent of your damages.

Here’s what you should document:

  • Medical Bills: Collect and keep copies of all medical bills, including doctor’s visits, hospital stays, medications, physical therapy, and any diagnostic tests (X-rays, MRIs, etc.).
  • Lost Wages: If your injuries prevent you from working, gather documentation of your lost wages. This could include paystubs, a letter from your employer verifying your lost workdays, or tax returns demonstrating a decrease in income.
  • Travel Costs: Keep receipts for any travel expenses incurred due to medical treatment, such as transportation to doctor’s appointments or physical therapy sessions.
  • Other Expenses: Document any additional out-of-pocket costs related to your accident, such as modifications to your home or vehicle to accommodate your injuries.

The Law Offices of Tim O'Hare: Your Texas Construction Accident Champions

Construction accidents can be life-altering events. While the steps outlined above empower you to take charge, navigating the legal system after an injury on your own can be overwhelming. That’s where The Law Offices of Tim O’Hare come in.

We are a team of experienced and compassionate work injury attorneys dedicated to fighting for injured workers in Texas construction accidents. Our proven track record of success speaks for itself — we have a history of securing maximum compensation for our clients.

More than just legal expertise, we offer a client-centered approach. We understand the physical, emotional, and financial hardships you face, and we’ll work tirelessly to get you the compensation you deserve. 

What steps should I take after a construction accident injury to protect my rights in Texas?

Don't Wait to Protect Your Rights: Schedule a Free Consultation Today

The sooner you take action after a construction accident, the stronger your case will be. Contact the Law Offices of Tim O’Hare today for a free consultation. We will review your case, discuss your legal options, and guide you through the entire process.

Don’t let a construction accident injury become a financial burden — let us fight for the compensation you deserve.