Cook County Jury Awards the Family of a Fatally Injured Chicago Construction Worker $11M in Damages

construction accidentConstruction accidents can be the result of a variety of causes. They might be caused by defective or improperly maintained tools or equipment. Alternately, they may be the result of human error or a failure to provide proper safety protections. It is important to retain experienced Chicago injury counsel and get started right away in order to get your investigation started. The sooner you begin, the more causes of action you may unearth. And, the more causes of action you bring, the better your chances may be of getting the full compensation you deserve. Depending on the facts of your case, the law may permit you to bring both a claim for workers’ compensation benefits and a civil lawsuit for money damages.

The case of the family of J.O. was an example of a tragic accident and also an example of how the subsequent legal process worked. CBS 2 recently reported about it. J.O. was a northwest Indiana man who worked construction in Chicago. In January 2015, J.O. was working at a project on the Gold Coast which involved the construction of a high-rise residential tower near Elm and State streets when he was killed. J.O.’s job at the time of his fatal injury involved working inside a crane some six floors off the ground. J.O. was pinned by a cage that descended on top of him as he was leaning into the shaft through which the cage passed.

After the accident occurred, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration opened an investigation into the accident to determine if any violations of laws or safety regulations occurred on the site and contributed to the man’s death. In any case where you are suing for your construction injuries, the results of an OSHA investigation that show that violations took place can be very helpful and go a long way in aiding you to obtain a successful outcome.

In J.O.’s case, his widow asserted a civil lawsuit for wrongful death. In the widow’s lawsuit, she was able to present evidence that her husband’s death was the result of an equipment problem that comprised safety. According to CBS 2, J.O.’s crane was rated for a maximum lifting capacity that was several thousand pounds less that the job he was doing. This meant that, when the load initially pinned J.O., the crane should have been able to lift the load off him but the load was too heavy for the crane to do that.

That evidence was enough to convince a Cook County jury to enter a judgment in favor of J.O.’s widow and children and award damages in the amount of $11 million.

Certainly no amount of money will replace the loss of the love, affection and support of a deceased loved one. The truth of that fact does not, however, reduce the reality that such a loss, in addition to the emotional pain caused, may also create a substantial financial crisis for the family left behind. This is especially true if the deceased was a primary earner in their household. When that happens, it is important to utilize the legal system and protect your family by obtaining the compensation the law says you deserve. The skilled Chicago injury attorneys at Katz, Friedman, Eagle, Eisenstein, Johnson & Bareck have been effectively representing construction injury clients (and surviving loved ones) for many years and are ready to advocate for you. To set up a free case evaluation, contact us at 800-444-1525 or through our website.

More Blog Posts:

Illinois Appellate Court Upholds IWCC’s Determination that Exceeded AMA Impairment Rating, Chicago Injury Attorneys Blog, April 19, 2017

When a General Contractor Can Be Liable in Illinois to a Subcontractor’s Employee for a Workplace Safety Issue, Chicago Injury Attorneys Blog, Jan. 18, 2017

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