Building Collapse Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale

Building collapses in Fort Lauderdale put workers and pedestrians at risk for serious injury and even death. When a building collapse occurs, many people may be responsible for the injuries that occur. A building collapse lawyer in Fort Lauderdale from Farmer, Jaffe, Weissing, Edwards, Fistos & Lehrman, P.L. can help you file suit against those parties and hold them liable for damages.

Schedule a consultation today: 954-524-2820.

Why do building collapses occur?

Buildings are more likely to collapse when a construction company is attempting to restore a damaged building. Building collapses can result from a number of construction issues, including:

  • Defective construction materials
  • Damage or rot to existing building materials
  • Poor supervision
  • Foundation failure
  • Scaffolding malfunction
  • Inadequate resources resulting in failure to provide proper equipment
  • Weight and measurement miscalculations

Many of these construction issues are the result of negligence by construction site owners, contractors, supervisors, engineers, and other professionals.

Building Collapse Injuries

Both construction workers and everyday people can be injured in building collapse accidents. These injuries include:

  • Head injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Loss of limbs
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Paraplegia
  • Quadriplegia
  • Internal bleeding
  • Death

Building collapse injuries may require emergency care and extensive rehabilitation. Patients may have to undergo numerous surgeries and months of physical therapy and long-term home care.

What should I do if I am the victim of a building collapse?

If you have been injured in a building collapse, you may have multiple options for recovery. Your options will depend on whether you are a worker or a pedestrian. If you are a worker, your first option is to file a workers’ compensation claim with your employer.

Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation provides injured employees with wage replacement and medical benefits. These benefits are available regardless of who was at fault for the building collapse. In exchange for these benefits, the employee must give up the right to file suit against his employer later on.

If the accident resulted from another party’s negligence, you can file a third-party injury claim.

Personal Injury Claims

While workers’ compensation laws protect employers from lawsuits filed by injured employees, injured pedestrians may still file suits against them. Depending on whether you are an injured worker or bystander, potential liable parties might include:

  • Engineers who miscalculated the acceptable weight limits and caused the walls to cave in
  • General or sub-contractors who did not follow certain specifications or ensure workers were using safety equipment properly
  • Inspectors who failed to notice flaws in the structure of the building
  • Other workers who failed to follow instructions when securing the building
  • Property owners who failed to alert workers of a hazardous condition on the grounds that would jeopardize the integrity of the building

Once you have determined your liable parties, you will have a maximum of four years after the accident to file suit. If you fail to bring your claim within four years, you will be unable to recover damages.

The success of a third-party lawsuit will rest on whether the plaintiff can adequately prove the defendant’s negligence in court. You prove negligence by establishing:

Duty: You must show that the defendant owed you a duty. Property owners, contractors, and other workers generally have a duty to provide and/or maintain a safe working area.

Breach of duty: You prove a breach by establishing that the defendant was negligent. Some examples of negligence in a building collapse include design defects, failure to maintain the building, and failure to inspect. You can prove negligence by presenting photos, witness testimony, and expert testimony.

Causation: You must prove your injuries were a direct result of the defendant’s negligence. If the injury would not have occurred had it not been for the defendant’s negligence, actual causation exists.

If the defendant’s actions produced foreseeable harm without interference, then proximate cause exists. Expert testimony can help establish causation.

Damages: Lastly, you must establish that you experienced damages in the building collapse. You can present medical records, pay records, and other documentation to prove damages.

Recovering Compensation After a Building Collapse

Building collapse accident victims can recover both economic and noneconomic damages by filing suit against those responsible. Economic damages cover the following:

  • Medical bills (past and future): You may recover damages to cover your medical treatments, surgeries, therapy, and home care.
  • Lost wages: Many accident victims are unable to work as they recover from their injuries. Damages can cover the wages you would have earned had the accident not occurred.
  • Loss of future earning capacity: The accident that occurred may permanently affect your future. We take that into account and determine the earnings you would have made.

Noneconomic damages cover pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and other damages that do not have a set value attached to them. We work with medical, vocational, and financial experts to determine exactly what your accident cost you.

Building collapse accidents may involve complicated legal issues that only an attorney will be able to manage. The attorneys at Farmer, Jaffe, Weissing, Edwards, Fistos & Lehrman, P.L. have years of experience representing construction accident victims just like you.

Our team of legal experts will conduct a detailed investigation and contact reconstruction experts, expert witnesses, and other experts to help your case.

For more information about your legal options, please call us today: 954-524-2820.