According to information from the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), approximately 18.5 percent of all workplace deaths in America happen within the construction industry, far more than any other field. These deaths are most commonly the result of falls, electrocutions, being struck by object and being caught in or between machinery.
Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, surviving family members could file a wrongful death lawsuit against the liable party, whether it’s the victim’s employer, a manufacturer of a defective piece of equipment or another individual or entity.
In filing a wrongful death lawsuit, the family is essentially arguing the following:
- The worker was killed because of the negligence of the defendant
- The worker’s close family members suffered some sort of losses because of the death
- The defendant should compensate the close family members for their losses
The losses described go beyond the loss of income provided by the deceased from his or her employment. Other noneconomic damages also apply in these claims, including the loss of quality of life, the loss of love and emotional support, the loss of consortium, emotional distress and more.
Wrongful death lawsuits are also quite different than workers’ compensation claims, which are simply made when someone suffers any kind of injury at work, regardless of whose fault it was. Wrongful death claims indicate the company or other party was directly responsible for the death due to its negligence.
For more information and guidance on how to proceed in a wrongful death claim after a loved one passed away in a construction accident, contact a respected San Diego personal injury lawyer with Thorsnes Bartolotta McGuire.