When people suffer injuries while on the job, they can usually look to recover workers’ compensation benefits from their employer’s insurance company. However, when those injuries occur onboard a ship or at sea, they need to look for alternative sources of recovery.
Special maritime laws govern boating accidents and other injuries that might occur on a ship. If you suffered harm while on a vessel, you should consult with a Bellaire maritime injury lawyer. A skilled workplace injury attorney could help investigate your accident and file a claim to recover compensation for your losses. Reach out to our office today to learn more.
Common Types of Maritime Accident Injuries
Ships, dredges, crew boats, barges, and other watercrafts can be dangerous environments. Injuries that occur on boats, piers, docks, and harbors can range from minor cuts and bruises to severe permanent damage. Some of the most common harm experienced in these settings includes:
- Broken bones
- Back and neck injuries, including spinal cord damage
- Head injuries and traumatic brain injuries
- Injuries to limbs, including amputations
- Wrongful death
A seasoned maritime attorney could help an injured Bellaire seaman evaluate the cause of their incident. Some ship injuries heal completely with time, while others result in lifelong medical complications that require therapy, special accommodations for mobility limitations, and even around-the-clock nursing care. Qualified legal counsel could help the injured party pursue a fair recovery considering all of these variables for their past and future losses.
Relevant Maritime Laws in Bellaire
Maritime law, also known as naval admiralty law, applies to injuries that happen to individuals who work on boats and ships, such as sailors, merchant seamen, longshoremen, commercial fishermen, and dockworkers. However, different statutes apply to different types of workers.
The Jones Act
The Jones Act entitles crewmembers of a ship to compensation for injuries they suffer while on the job. If their harm is due to another person’s negligence, this federal law allows them to file suit against the liable individual or entity to collect benefits for maintenance and cure as well as other losses. These lawsuits may be filed in State or Federal courts.
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
The Longshore Act covers land-based maritime workers, such as dock workers and longshoremen. The Longshore Act differs from the Jones Act because it operates like a workers’ compensation statute. Injured workers can file quick, no-fault claims to collect benefits to cover their medical costs resulting from the injury and a portion of their lost wages.
If the injury occurred due to a third party’s actions, such as a manufacturer of a defective product, an injured maritime worker might also be able to hold them responsible for providing compensation.
A Bellaire attorney who is well versed in maritime law could help injured seamen better understand what damages they are entitled to and handle the process of filing a claim from start to finish.
Contact a Bellaire Maritime Injury Attorney for Help Recovering Compensation
Maritime laws can be uniquely complicated. They require a detailed understanding of state, federal, and even international laws. Working with an experienced Bellaire maritime injury lawyer with the right qualifications is critical. That is why our team of dedicated attorneys is here to help.
If you suffered an injury while working at sea or on a ship, contact the Gutierrez Law Firm today for legal counsel you can trust. Consultations are free.