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Construction Accident Attorneys in Austin

Representing Injured Workers Since 1995

According to recent statistics, Texas has one of the highest workplace fatality rates in the United States. Many of these fatalities happen at construction sites. In fact, representatives from OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) have publicly commented on the relatively lax safety norms in Texas’s construction industry. And, because Texas is the only state in the U.S. that does not require employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance, countless construction workers are not covered.

At Howry Breen & Herman, we have spent nearly 25 years fighting for the rights of injured individuals, as well as families, businesses, and other entities affected by negligence. If you were injured or your loved one was killed as a result of unsafe or negligent conditions at a construction site, we can help. Our Austin construction accident attorneys have the litigation experience to aggressively advocate for you and your recovery.

Discuss your options with a member of our team; call (512) 430-4844 or fill out an online contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.

Types of Construction Accidents in Austin

The very nature of construction work makes it a dangerous occupation. Construction workers are required to work with heavy materials, operate machinery, and move around unfinished job sites on a daily basis. Though there many industry regulations and safety standards set forth by OSHA, they are not always followed—sometimes with deadly consequences.

Some of the most common construction accidents include:

  • Falling from unsafe scaffolding and other heights
  • Being hit by falling objects or debris
  • Explosions, fires, and electrocutions
  • Becoming trapped between objects, materials, or machinery
  • Collapsing trenches, leading to burials
  • Vehicle-related accidents, including being hit by passing motorists
  • Misuse of machinery and/or defective machinery
  • Slipping, tripping, or falling

Construction workers can also suffer from overexertion and may develop chronic injuries as a result of long-term physical labor. Because of the highly dangerous nature of these accidents, injuries are often severe and life-altering. Many construction accidents are ultimately fatal, with about 18% of all workplace fatalities resulting from construction accidents, according to a 2010 study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Was Your Construction Accident the Result of Negligence?

As with all personal injury claims, construction accident cases are dependent on proving negligence. In other words, you must prove that another person, company, or entity acted carelessly or recklessly and that those careless or reckless actions directly or indirectly caused your injuries.

A construction accident may be due to negligence if it occurred as a result of:

  • Inadequate or improper training
  • Failure to follow safety rules and regulations
  • Insufficient supervision
  • Negligent management and/or hiring
  • Failure to address an employee’s safety concerns
  • Lack of proper machinery/equipment maintenance
  • Exposure to hazardous materials or toxic fumes
  • Unrealistic employer expectations, leading to safety shortcuts
  • Unsafe procedures or job site conditions

These are just some examples of how negligence can cause construction accidents. These types of claims tend to be very complex due to the number of parties involved, as well as state and federal laws regarding workplace safety. In order to pursue any construction accident claim, you will have to prove that your employer or another negligent party owed you a “duty of care” and that this duty of care was breached. It is important that you speak with an experienced construction accident lawyer in Austin who can help you navigate the process.

Collage of construction worker looking quite serious and a construction site plus the final result, a building.

OSHA Violations and Construction Site Safety in Austin

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has created numerous safety regulations that all active construction sites should follow. Unfortunately, lack of supervision or training, negligence, and attempts to cut company costs (among other factors) can all lead to OSHA violations. These violations, in turn, can lead to serious accidents, threatening the health and safety of construction workers.

Some of the most common OSHA violations on construction sites include:

  • Insufficient fall protection
  • Improper/lack of training
  • Lack of head, face, and/or eye protection
  • Failure to communicate hazards
  • Unsafe scaffolds and ladders
  • Defective equipment/tools
  • Open holes and other fall hazards
  • Failure to provide respiratory protection
  • Insufficient control of energy/electrical systems
  • Poor machine guarding
  • Improper use of industrial trucks/vehicles

When construction companies fail to follow all OSHA regulations, workers can be involved in severe and sometimes fatal accidents. In such cases, the person or party responsible for the safety/health violation can and should be held accountable.

Who is Liable for a Construction Site Accident in Texas?

In Texas, liability for a construction site accident can be complex and may involve multiple parties depending on the circumstances of the accident. Here are some key entities that might be held liable:

  • Property Owner: If the accident occurred on the property of a specific owner, they may be held liable for unsafe conditions or negligence in maintaining a safe environment.
  • General Contractor: The general contractor overseeing the construction project could be held liable for accidents if they failed to enforce safety regulations, provide proper training to workers, or maintain a safe work environment.
  • Subcontractors: Subcontractors responsible for specific aspects of the construction work may also bear liability if their actions or negligence contributed to the accident.
  • Architects and Engineers: If design flaws or errors in plans contributed to the accident, architects or engineers involved in the project could be held liable.
  • Manufacturers and Suppliers: If faulty equipment, materials, or tools contributed to the accident, the manufacturers or suppliers of those items could be held liable under product liability laws.
  • Employees: If the accident was caused by the negligence or actions of an employee, both the individual worker and their employer may be held liable.
  • Government Entities: In some cases, if the accident occurred on a public construction site or involved government contracts, liability may extend to government entities responsible for oversight and regulation.

Compensation for Austin Construction Accident Victims

Injured construction workers have the following avenues for recovering compensation following a construction site accident:

  • Workers' Compensation: Texas does not require most private employers to carry workers' compensation insurance. However, some employers choose to provide this coverage voluntarily. If an injured worker's employer has workers' compensation insurance, the worker can typically file a claim with the employer's insurance carrier to receive benefits such as medical expenses, lost wages, and disability benefits.
  • Non-Subscriber Employers: If an injured worker's employer does not carry workers' compensation insurance (referred to as a "non-subscriber"), the injured worker may have the right to file a lawsuit against the employer for negligence. In such cases, the injured worker can seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
  • Third-Party Claims: In addition to pursuing benefits from their employer, injured construction workers may also have the option to file third-party claims against other parties whose negligence contributed to the accident. This could include claims against general contractors, subcontractors, property owners, equipment manufacturers, or other entities involved in the construction project. Third-party claims can allow injured workers to seek compensation beyond what is available through workers' compensation, such as damages for pain and suffering.
  • Product Liability Claims: If a defective product or piece of equipment contributed to the accident, the injured worker may have grounds for a product liability claim against the manufacturer or distributor of the product. Product liability claims can provide compensation for injuries caused by defective or dangerous products.
  • Personal Injury Lawsuits: In cases where a construction site accident results in severe injuries or fatalities and is the result of another party's negligence, injured workers or their families may pursue personal injury lawsuits to seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and wrongful death.

Expert Austin Construction Accident Lawyers Ready to Assist You

A construction accident can have serious, life-changing consequences for both the victim and his or her family and loved ones. In many cases, injured individuals can pursue compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, lost earning capacity, and more. The family members of a construction worker who was killed while on the job may be able to recover compensation for medical treatment prior to death, funeral costs, loss of companionship, and more.

At Howry Breen & Herman, we are dedicated to fighting for your fair recovery. Our attorneys offer a compassionate and aggressive approach to each case they take on. We take the time to meet with you, learn the specifics of your situation, and understand your unique goals. From there, we act as your tireless advocate throughout every stage of the legal process.

To learn more about how our firm can help you, contact us online or by phone at (512) 430-4844. We assist both plaintiffs and defendants in Austin, Georgetown, and the surrounding areas.

Construction Accidents
  • Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2023
    Howry, Breen & Herman is proud to have been named a Tier 1, 2 and 3 Austin “Best Law Firm” in 9 practice areas by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® (“U.S. News” and BL Rankings, LLC). Law firms are selected for inclusion in this prestigious ranking based on a series of quantitative and qualitative criteria. Our specialty and tiers are listed here:
  • Texas Lawyer Austin Best of 2020: Personal Injury Firm
    Howry Breen & Herman, LLP was selected the Top Personal Injury Law Firm in Austin by Texas Lawyer, “Best of 2020”. The annual special supplement contains the results of Texas Lawyer readers’ poll, wherein readers cast their votes for the best providers of services and goods to the legal profession.
  • Attorney Sean Breen and Attorney Chris Lavorato placed in California’s Top 100 Settlements for 2019, as tracked by The Recorder and VerdictSearch.
  • Our law firm is proud to have been recognized in the Texas Verdicts Hall of Fame. Texas Lawyer in conjunction with VerdictSearch, recognize attorneys and law firms for their verdicts of $10 million or more. In 2011 Sean Breen was a Hall of Fame Award Recipient for the #1 Premises Liability Top Texas Verdict, awarded by Texas Lawyer, for the jury verdict award in the case VanDusen v. Aspen Square Management. In 2016 Sean Breen was inducted into the Texas Verdicts Hall of Fame, awarded by Texas Lawyer, for an outstanding verdict in Nester v. Textron.
  • America's Top 100 Personal Injury Attorneys 2021
    Selection to America’s Top 100 Personal Injury Attorneys® is by invitation only and is reserved to identity the nation’s most exceptional litigators for high-value personal injury, catastrophic injury, wrongful death, product liability, and medical malpractice matters. HBH is proud that Sean Breen has been selected for this award. Less than one-half percent (0.5%) of active attorneys in the United States will receive this honor — truly the most exclusive and elite level of attorneys in the community. (2017-2022)
  • Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2016
    Howry, Breen & Herman is proud to have been named a Tier 1, 2 and 3 Austin “Best Law Firm” in 7 practice areas by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® (“U.S. News” and BL Rankings, LLC). Law firms are selected for inclusion in this prestigious ranking based on a series of quantitative and qualitative criteria. Our specialty and tiers are listed here:
  • Best Lawyers - Lawyer of the Year | Litigation - Trusts & Estates (by BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC)
  • Best Lawyers - Lawyer of the Year | Personal Injury - Plaintiffs (by BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC)
  • Lifetime Achievement selection to America’s Top 100 Attorneys® is by invitation only and is reserved to identify the nation’s most exceptional attorneys whose accomplishments and impact on the legal profession merit a Lifetime Achievement award. Selection is not achieved based on a single accomplishment or a single great year of success, but rather on a lifetime of hard work, ethical standards, and community enriching accomplishments that are inspiring among the legal profession. Both Sean Breen (2017) and Randy Howry (2018) are honored to receive this award.
  • America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators® is reserved to identify the nation’s most exceptional trial attorneys in high value, high stakes legal matters. To be considered for selection, an attorney must have litigated (for either plaintiff or defendant) a matter (1) with at least $2,000,000 in alleged damages at stake or (2) with the fate of a business worth at least $2,000,000 at stake. These minimum qualifications are required for initial consideration. Thereafter, candidates are carefully screened through comprehensive Qualitative Comparative Analysis based on a broad array of criteria, including the candidate’s professional experience, litigation experience, significant case results, representative high stakes matters, peer reputation, and community impact in order to rank the candidates throughout the state. HBH is privileged to honor Partners Sean Breen (2017- 2021) and Randy Howry 2017, 2019, 2020 and 2021 for selection of this award.
  • Expertise- Best Real Estate Lawyers in Austin 2020
    Expertise - Howry Breen & Herman was recognized and featured in an article by as one of the Best Real Estate Lawyers in Austin. 2020
  • America’s Premier High-Stakes Trial Lawyers®” – 7 Figure Litigators®, 8 Figure Litigators®, is meant to recognize the nation’s most respected and preeminent high-stakes trial lawyers based on their verifiable verdicts and/or settlements. It is a tremendous honor for Sean Breen (2019) and Randy Howry (2020) to be recognized among this elite group.
  • America’s Premier High-Stakes Trial Lawyers®” – 7 Figure Litigators®, 8 Figure Litigators®, is meant to recognize the nation’s most respected and preeminent high-stakes trial lawyers based on their verifiable verdicts and/or settlements. It is a tremendous honor for Sean Breen (2019) and Randy Howry (2020) to be recognized among this elite group.
  • The National Trial Lawyers – Top 100, a highly respected legal organization that limits its members to premier trial attorneys who demonstrate superior qualifications of leadership, reputation, influence, stature and public profile measured by strict qualification requirements. Sean Breen Top 100 Civil Plaintiff, 2009 – 2020.
  • Top 10 Business Tort Trial Lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers. Randy Howry 2012-2013; Sean Breen since 2016.
  • Best Lawyers in America
    The Best Lawyers in America® recognizes the top 5% of the most skilled attorneys in the nation. The robust selection process requires attorneys to nominate and review fellow lawyers based on their ethics, skill, knowledge, and ability to obtain results for their clients. The Best Lawyers in America® list is a way for plaintiffs to identify the leading attorneys in their region, known for their ability to get results with honesty, strength, and skill. Tim Herman, Sean Breen & Randy Howry have been featured by The Best Lawyers in America® (2006-2020) running alongside some of the most qualified firms in the nation. More info here.
  • Texas Monthly Top Attorneys - Sean E. Breen
    Top Attorneys As Published In Texas Monthly
  • Top 50 US Verdicts All Practice Areas Texas 2017
    Sean Breen was honored by for recovering one of the Top 50 Verdicts in Texas in 2017. This is an honorable distinction, reserved for those attorneys that achieve the highest settlements and verdicts in the state.
  • Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum
    Sean Breen is a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, a renowned legal organization whose membership is restricted to trial attorneys who have achieved seven-figured settlements and/or jury verdicts. 2011.
  • Multi Million Dollar Advocates Forum
    We are proud to have Sean Breen who is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum. In order to become a member, an attorney must demonstrate that he or she has successfully achieved at least one six-figure settlement or jury verdict. 2011.
  • AV Preeminent
    Martindale-Hubbell® is widely regarded as one of the most renowned peer-review rating organizations in the legal field. Randy Howry (2018), Sean Breen (2001), Tim Herman (1998), Glen Wilkerson (2014) and Chris Lavorato (2014) at Howry, Breen & Herman have achieved the organization’s highest distinction of AV Preeminent®.
  • Super Lawyers
    Each year, Super Lawyers® magazine publishes its list of peer-nominated/evaluated and independently reviewed attorneys. We are proud to have attorneys who have been selected for inclusion in the prestigious Texas Super Lawyers® List, by Thomas Reuters since 2003, running through 2020.
  • Top American Lawyers
    Membership in Top American Lawyers is limited to only 1% of all attorneys in the United States. Randy Howry is proud to be honored with a Lifetime Charter Membership in this exclusive organization (2017).
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