One of the many reasons people get injured on commercial or residential properties are construction defects caused by contractor or architectural mistakes. These types of errors may show up immediately or take several years to manifest. Regardless of how long it takes for the construction defect to surface, the legal responsibility for any resulting damages and injuries typically falls on contractors, engineers or building architects and/or property owners.
If you or your loved one was hurt due to a construction defect, you can file a civil lawsuit against the responsible party for the injuries you sustained. To maximize your chances of receiving fair compensation, consider hiring a skilled and compassionate personal injury lawyer to help you navigate the intricacies of your case.
Defining Construction Defects
In general, there are two types of construction defects—those caused by contractor mistakes and those caused by architects and engineers.
The former means the defects occur during the building phase and stem from either negligence or misinterpreting architectural designs. The latter happens when there is an architectural flaw in the design of a home or commercial building.
Examples of construction defects and subsequent accidents include:
• A faulty staircase design leads to a person falling down the stairs
• Exposed wiring results in a person getting injured from an electric shock
• A roof collapses and injures occupants because of a faulty design, poor quality materials or construction mistakes
• A floor collapses causing a person to fall and suffer broken bones or other debilitating injuries
• Someone falls out a window that wasn’t properly attached to a window frame
• Cracks in a ceiling cause a lighting fixture to fall and injure a houseguest
Who Is Liable for Construction Defects?
Liability for construction defects is largely based on contracts signed by all parties involved in the building process, including the property owner, architect, contractor and subcontractor.
These contracts almost always specify who’s responsible for construction defects and any accidents and injuries resulting from them. It’s common for liability to be passed down the chain of command. For instance, the owner holds the general contractor liable for any defects, and the general contractor requires subcontractors to take responsibility for any construction mistakes.
This passing of liability typically leads to subcontractors having to accept responsibility for construction defects. Consequently, many subcontractors carry extensive liability coverage which protects them from losing large sums of money in the event of a lawsuit.
If you’re considering filing a personal injury claim, you may have a tough time interpreting contracts and figuring out which party is at fault for your injuries. This may be the right time to seek the assistance of a knowledgeable Georgia personal injury lawyer who can identify the liable party .
How to Prove Fault in a Construction Defect Case
Once you establish which party is liable for your injuries, you can file a claim with their insurance company or file a civil lawsuit. The latter typically happens when the insurance company isn’t willing to offer fair compensation for your injuries.
To win your negligent construction lawsuit, you will have to prove the following:
• The liable party (the defendant) owed you a standard of care (it was their duty to design or build a structurally safe home or commercial building)
• The defendant failed to adhere to the standard of care
• There is a clear link between this failure and the injuries you sustained
Proving fault in a construction negligence lawsuit can be difficult. If you’re seeking compensation for your injuries, you’ll almost certainly be asked to produce concrete evidence proving the defendant owes you damages for the injuries and losses you endured.
Your personal injury attorney can be of significant help during this process. They will likely know what evidence is needed and how to go about getting it. Evidence in a construction defect injury and premises liability lawsuit typically includes expert witness testimony, photographs showcasing the damage or defect and independent inspection documents.
Is a Construction Defect Responsible for Your Injury? Discuss Your Case with an Atlanta, Lilburn or Newnan Personal Injury Attorney
Construction mistakes happen, but this doesn’t mean you should bear the physical, emotional and
financial cost of someone else’s sloppy work. If you’ve been injured in a construction defect accident and live in or around Atlanta, Newnan or Lilburn, consider contacting the Law Office of Johnny Phillips for legal help.
To schedule a free consultation, call 833-564-6693.