Maritime work appeals to millions of workers. Many people dream of working on the open sea, and the industry does offer lucrative opportunities. However, it also poses grave dangers. Employees risk harm from slips and falls, oil rig explosions, falling overboard, and disease outbreaks.
If you or a loved one suffers an injury while at sea, an off-shore accident lawyer can help you seek compensation for various damages, including medical costs and lost wages.
Common Off-Shore Injuries
Employees can sustain a lot of different kinds of injuries depending on the specific work they do. Head injuries are common due to objects falling on them or the worker falling on unguarded surfaces. These injuries can impair memory, cause internal bleeding or traumatic brain injury, and in worse case scenarios, the victim may succumb while receiving treatment. Other typical injuries include:
- Broken, fractured, or crushed bones
- Dislodged or amputated limbs
- Chemical burns or burns from electrical fires or explosions
- Lung damage from prolonged exposure to toxic airborne chemicals
- Hearing loss from working around loud machinery
- Spinal cord and back injuries
- Hypothermia or frostbite from prolonged exposure to extreme temperatures
- Repetitive motion injuries from hours of twisting, pulling and lifting heavy loads
These mishaps are often attributed to unsafe working conditions and inadequate training. This would be considered your employer’s responsibility since it is up to the employer to provide a safe place to work. Your Henry off-shore accident attorney can unearth such negligence and hold the at-fault parties accountable when seeking your compensation.
For a free legal consultation with a off-shore accident lawyer serving Henry, call (337) 777-7777
What Should I Do After an Off-Shore Accident?
There are several important things you can do immediately following an off-shore accident to safeguard both your health and your injury claim:
Get Medical Treatment
Your health and wellbeing are of utmost importance, and seeking treatment is vital. Get professional medical attention even if your injuries seem minor. We advise clients to keep copies of all medical bills, procedures, and expenses, as these will become evidence in their compensation claims.
Report the Accident to Your Employer
Make sure to report the incident to your employer as soon as you are able. This is a required step to pursue any compensation and there are strict deadlines to do so. For example, if you are filing under the Jones Act, you must report the injury to your employer within just seven days of your accident.
Document the Accident
If you are able, take photos of the scene of the accident, your injuries, and any equipment involved. Understanding the main factors of your accident will be important for your lawyer, as these facts are the bedrock of whatever comes later. Your lawyer can identify liable parties and request supporting documents. For instance, a history of faulty equipment could expose employer negligence, and the company could have documented past incidents.
Don’t Discuss Your Accident or Claim Without Your Lawyer Present
Other than reporting the accident to your employer, don’t discuss the matter with anyone without your lawyer present (and if you wish, your lawyer can be there for that too). Don’t post about your accident or claim on social media. Don’t accept a settlement or any money, or sign any documents without your lawyer.
Henry Off-Shore Accident Lawyer Near Me (337) 777-7777
The Jones Act
The Jones Act, also known as the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, allows injured maritime workers to sue negligent employers for compensation. However, to file under the Jones Act, you must meet certain requirements. You must be considered an official seaman, which means you must work on a navigating vessel (this could include an oil rig as long as it has some navigation), and your work must contribute to the overall mission of the ship or vessel. You must also spend at least 30 percent of your time on board the vessel to qualify for a suit under the Jones Act.
In addition, some form of negligence must have contributed to your accident and you must be able to prove it. Employers and shipowners have a responsibility to create and maintain a safe work environment and anything less could be considered negligence. Your Henry off-shore accident lawyer can help you with this.
Finally, your Jones Act lawsuit must be filed within three years of the date of your accident (or three years from the date your injuries surfaced if they didn’t appear immediately). Remember that you must also report the incident to your employer within just seven days.
Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) is a federal compensation law for maritime employees who work in or near navigable waters. This includes shipbuilders, dockworkers, harbor workers, shipping terminal employees, and more. The LHWCA was enacted in 1927 and provides injured maritime workers with compensation such as lost wages, lost earning capacity, medical expenses, and partial to complete disability.
Under the LHWCA, negligence does not need to have played a role in your accident for you to pursue compensation. You must file your injury within one year of your accident and you must report the injury to your employer within thirty days.
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Contact Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers for Legal Counsel Today
Were you injured in an off-shore work-related accident? Our attorneys can help. At Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers we can negotiate with the insurance company, answer your questions, and keep you up to date on developments in your case. Let our Henry off-shore accident lawyers do the hard work of your injury claim so you can rest, recover, and spend time with your family. Contact us today for a free case review and more information.