$2.59 Million In Construction Accident Lawsuit Settlement Reached After Investigation Find Unsafe Ladders As Fault
A construction accident lawsuit has been settled for $2.59 Million after a long legal battle and investigation that found the company used unsafe ladder. The injured construction worker legal battle lasted 13 years before the construction accident lawsuit was settled due to several legal battles before its final resolution in June, 2015. According to court documents in this construction accident, issues with the man’s immigration status, appeals, and finally a journey to the Washington State Supreme Court were involved with the ruling’s delay.
The man involved in the construction accident lawsuit was working in a worksite in October 2002 when he slipped off the scaffolding, fell 30 feet, and suffered several serious injuries including a broken leg, crushed pelvis, broken arm, bruised ribs, and a traumatic brain injury. According to the construction accident investigation, the Seattle-based company that built the scaffolding, Hi Tech Erectors, used ladders that did not follow required safety standards. The investigation showed that it was the fault of the unsafe ladders that led to the man’s accident. Court records show that the man underwent 13 surgeries to date, with more expected in the future. [http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20150708006516/en/Everett-Man-Awarded-2.59-Million-Construction-Accident, June 2015]
The injured worker originally took the construction accident lawsuit to trial in 2006 after he recovered from his initial injuries. The first jury ruled that Hi Tech was negligent and responsible for the man’s injuries. Despite this ruling, the jury did not award the man any damages for injuries suffered during his construction accident, which the plaintiff stated was a result of biased opinion toward the man’s immigration status.
According to the man’s lawyers, the immigration status of the man may have influenced the jury’s decision not to award him with damages. The construction worker was an undocumented worker, although he had paid taxes to the United States for 25 years. As a result of the original verdict, the case was appealed in the Washington State Supreme Court in 2010. The State Supreme Court agreed that immigration status could not be used as evidence in a personal injury case. The court ruled that the man was eligible for a new personal injury trial as a result of his construction accident. In 2012, the case was approved for a re-trial by the Washington Superior Court, but it was not until June 2015 that the trial was held again.
After six days of testimony and two days of evidence evaluation, the jurors again stated that Hi Tech was negligent, but also awarded the man with $2.59 million in damages. The money will be used to help cover the cost of the man’s medical expenses and loss of income after his traumatizing construction accident. The man said in a statement after the verdict was received, “The reality is that my fall had a devastating impact on me, my life, not to mention my family’s. When I was in Harborview right after the fall, my wife was at Swedish Hospital, giving birth to our third child. Not only did I miss the birth, I wasn’t able to hold our child because of the casts. Nothing can give me that moment back.”
Hi Tech has not stated whether it plans to appeal the verdict.