GWC Obtains $1.5 Million for Union Ironworker

GWC Partner Joseph P. Sorce and attorney Geoffrey E. Jacobs have obtained a $1.5 million settlement for a union ironworker who was injured in a trip-and-fall accident.

Serious Fall on Concrete Floor

GWC’s client was a 57-year-old union ironworker and a proud member of Local 1 for many years. In October 2017, he was performing detailing work as a subcontractor on a construction project at a Chicago residential property.

The client was walking to his work area when he tripped and fell on nails that were sticking out the concrete floor, resulting in serious bodily trauma.

Two Years of Treatment Prove Ineffective

Because of this incident, the ironworker sustained life-changing injuries to his left hip and lower back. After a conservative course of treatment that included physical therapy and cortisone injections failed to alleviate his persistent pain, he was diagnosed with left hip osteoarthritis that was rendered symptomatic by the fall. He then underwent surgical intervention in the form of a total left hip arthroplasty in October 2018.

After his hip surgery, the client continued to experience lower back pain radiating down his left leg, for which he began a regimen of physical therapy and epidural steroid injections. When this plan of action proved ineffective, he underwent an L3-L5 decompression and fusion surgery in May 2019 to alleviate the spinal stenosis and degenerative disc disease that were aggravated by his fall.

Despite these surgeries and other medical interventions over the course of two continuous years of treatment, the client still suffered from significant pain and limitations in his left hip and lower back, leaving him unable to return to his job as an ironworker.

GWC Obtains Large Settlement for Ironworker

GWC filed suit against the general contractor and the concrete forming subcontractor on the construction project, asserting that the negligence of both parties caused the ironworker’s fall.

Mr. Sorce and Mr. Jacobs established that the nails on which the client tripped had been left in the deck by the concrete forming subcontractor, whose employees had removed pole shores without also removing the nails securing the shores to the floor. As the party that created the trip hazard, the subcontractor had the responsibility to remedy it, which it failed to do.

Additionally, GWC argued that the general contractor was liable because it had control over the means and methods of the concrete forming subcontractor’s work as well as control over the safety of the entire project. By failing to identify this obvious hazard and ensure that it was remedied, the general contractor shared responsibility for the ironworker’s injuries.

Based upon the strength of these arguments, Mr. Sorce and Mr. Jacobs obtained a settlement of $1.5 million for their client. The amount of this settlement was especially impressive in light of the client’s advanced age and the relatively small number of remaining working years that had been anticipated prior to the incident.

Helping Workers Injured in Construction Accidents

Construction accident claims are frequently challenging, demanding comprehensive knowledge both of the operations of the construction industry and the applicable law. To overcome these challenges, injured workers over the past four decades have turned to the construction accident attorneys at GWC Injury Lawyers LLC.

With more than $2 billion recovered in verdicts and settlements, GWC is one of the leading Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation law firms in Illinois. GWC has often been called “the construction accident law firm,” having represented members of nearly all of the major building trades unions in the state. These unions count on us when a serious construction accident occurs because they know we can get their members the results they deserve.

To schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation with an experienced construction accident attorney, contact GWC today. You may call our office at (312) 464-1234 or click here to chat with a representative at any time.