Workers’ Compensation for Injured Roofers
We Fight for Workers Injured in High-Risk Occupations
Job hazards such as ladders, power tools, and electricity place roofers at high risk for workplace injuries. According to a 2018 Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report, roofing was one of the most dangerous professions in the country, with a fatal work injury rate of 48.6 per 100,000 workers. Roofers who suffer workplace injuries may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits such as payments for medical bills and lost wages. The dedicated work injury lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. proudly assist Pennsylvania roofers in obtaining the benefits they deserve, including damages from any responsible third parties.
Common Causes of Roofing Accidents
Roofers work from heights, placing them at risk for falls – a leading cause of death in the construction industry, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Fall protection in the construction industry was also the most frequently cited OSHA standard violated in 2018. Other than falls, common causes of roofer injuries include:
- Chemicals – Roofers may be exposed to hazardous chemicals such as asbestos, lead, and silica. Employers are required to develop a hazard communication program and train workers on how to safely handle chemicals in the workplace.
- Dust – Housekeeping and personal protective equipment (PPE) such as respirators and safety glasses can help protect roofers from being injured by flying dust, debris, and other particles.
- Electricity – Electric shock injuries are common among roofers. Employers are required to de-energize, ground, and guard power circuits when roofers work close enough to come in contact with them.
- Heat – Roofers work outside in all types of weather. During the summer months, they may suffer heat cramps, heat rash, heat exhaustion, or heat stroke.
- Overexertion – When lifting heavy materials, roofers may suffer various overexertion injuries, including strains, sprains, and musculoskeletal disorders.
- Power tools – Construction workers typically work with power tools, which have the potential to cause electrical injuries, puncture wounds, and even amputations.
- Repetitive stress – Roofing requires workers to perform many of the same functions every day. Over time, roofers may develop repetitive stress injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, bursitis, and rotator cuff syndrome.
Filing for Workers’ Compensation in Pennsylvania
Most Pennsylvania employees are covered by the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act (the Act), which provides that injured workers are entitled to compensation for their medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses related to their work injury. Under the Act, roofers who are injured on the job must report their injuries to their employers within 120 days. Upon receipt of such notice, employers may choose to accept or deny a claim; denied claims may be appealed within three years from the date of the worker’s injury. The Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. have successfully helped all types of workers file both initial workers’ compensation claims as well as any necessary appeals and claims against third parties.
Under the no-fault workers’ compensation system, employees may not sue their employers for work injuries in personal injury lawsuits. Employees must avail themselves of their “exclusive remedy” – workers’ compensation. However, when someone other than the employer is responsible for an employee’s injury, the employee may sue that individual in a third-party claim. In the roofing industry, third parties typically include manufacturers of faulty ladders or scaffolding, construction site managers, and property owners.
The statute of limitations for third-party claims in Pennsylvania is two years. In addition to filing within that time period, workers must also prove that the third party negligently or intentionally caused or contributed to their accident. Pennsylvania follows the comparative negligence approach to liability; therefore workers may be eligible for compensation even if they are determined to be partially at fault for the accident. However, the damage award will be reduced in accordance with the worker’s percentage of fault.
In Pennsylvania, third-party personal injury claims may be filed simultaneously with workers’ compensation claims. While workers’ compensation includes payments for medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation, and other economic expenses associated with the injury, third-party claims may provide workers with additional non-economic damages such as pain and suffering. For more information on the types and amounts of compensation that are available, workers should seek legal advice from a qualified attorney in their local area.
Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Proudly Represent Roofers in Workers’ Comp and Third-Party Claims
If you were injured at work, contact a Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyer at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Our skilled attorneys can help you obtain the maximum compensation in your case. We proudly represent workers in Philadelphia and throughout Pennsylvania from our offices in Philadelphia, Bensalem, Lansdowne, and Reading. For a free consultation, please complete our online contact form or call us at 888-PITT-LAW today.
We represent injured workers in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, Montgomery County, and throughout Pennsylvania, including those in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester, and Wynnewood.