For maritime workers, the risk of injury, illness, and even fatality is higher than that of the average American worker. These are risks that the brave maritime workers face every day simply going to work and doing their jobs. Many of these workers live right here in the Jennings area.
An off-shore accident could permanently change your life and your ability to earn a living. Recovering damages can help you mitigate the financial losses you or your family have suffered. If you’ve been hurt in an off-shore accident at work, you might be entitled to compensation. A Jennings off-shore accident lawyer can tell you which maritime laws can help you recover damages and guide you through your compensation claim.
Common Injuries in an Off-Shore Accident
The injuries sustained in an off-shore accident can be severe and can worsen due to the delay of treatment as maritime vessels may be far away from health facilities. Some of the more common injuries sustained in offshore accidents include:
- Loss of limbs
- Broken, fractured, or crushed bones
- Head injuries, including concussions or traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord and back injuries
Off-shore workers may also experience frostbite or hypothermia if exposed to extremely cold conditions (or worse, extremely cold water) for long periods. Internal injuries can also be quite common in off-shore accidents. Internal bleeding and damage to various internal organs may also occur. For example, maritime workers may sustain lung damage if they inhale hazardous chemicals.
You must seek medical assistance immediately after your off-shore accident. Receiving timely medical intervention reduces the risk of fatality and improves your chances of making a solid recovery.
You can prove that you sustained injuries by keeping copies of all medical records, bills, and documentation. These could become evidence in your case, and could also help your Jennings off-shore accident lawyer determine an appropriate settlement amount for your compensation claim.
For a free legal consultation with a off-shore accident lawyer serving Jennings, call (337) 777-7777
The Jones Act
The Jones Act, also known as the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, allows injured seamen to sue their employers directly for compensation. The Jones Act holds employers liable for any negligence on their part that may have resulted in an employee’s injuries. Employers in the maritime industry must provide reasonably safe workspaces for their workers. You can also use the Jones Act to recover damages if a fellow crew member was negligent and their actions caused your injury.
The term “seaman” broadly covers crew members working on maritime vessels (oil rigs and platforms count as long as they have some kind of navigation). Seamen can include anyone working in navigable waters whose work contributes to the overall purpose of the vessel and who spends more than 30 percent of their time on the vessel.
A Jennings off-shore accident lawyer will help you prove negligence if you are claiming damages under the Jones Act. Your lawyer could investigate your case, which could help yield evidence showing that your employer’s actions or inactions led to the off-shore accident.
Jennings Off-Shore Accident Lawyer Near Me (337) 777-7777
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
In Louisiana, each port gets to develop its own safety and security plan. However, when safety and security regulations are ignored, maritime workers can be injured on the job. If you’re a maritime worker who wouldn’t be considered a seaman by Jones Act standards, the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) could cover you. The LHWCA outlines how maritime workers can pursue compensatory damages from their employers and covers those working in the building of maritime vessels, repairing, loading and unloading.
An off-shore accident lawyer serving the Jennings area can give you a deeper understanding of what the law covers and determine whether you might qualify.
Which Damages Can I Pursue in My Injury Claim?
If you are a seaman, your compensatory damages could likely include maintenance and cure. You should receive these benefits whether or not you are pursuing a lawsuit against your employer. Maintenance and cure is a small amount meant to cover basic medical care and living expenses while you heal. However, employers can set maintenance payments to very low rates. Having an off-shore accident lawyer by your side could possibly help you receive higher maintenance and cure benefits.
If you choose to pursue a Jones Act or LHWCA injury claim, your lawyer could seek compensation and damages far beyond basic maintenance and cure. One of these damages is the value of your lost earnings. You have the right to pursue the wages you’ve lost if you had to take time off work while recovering. Severe injuries can put maritime workers out of work for quite a while. You need to ensure that your family has a source of income during that time. A Jennings off-shore accident lawyer can help you seek the earnings you have lost due to your injuries.
Another factor affecting the value of compensatory damages would be your medical expenses. You can pursue both current and future expenses incurred for the treatment of your injuries.
The following are examples of further damages you and your lawyer could pursue:
- Pain and suffering
- Reduced quality of life
- Loss of earning capacity
- Partial to complete disability
- Vocational rehabilitation
Your off-shore accident lawyer can determine the number of compensatory damages you can pursue. This can be very useful in helping you build a strong case or negotiating for a higher settlement.
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Call Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Today
Talking to a Jennings off-shore accident lawyer from our firm comes with no upfront costs or charges. At Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers, we’ll review your case in a free consultation. In addition, our off-shore accident lawyers work on a contingency basis. This means if we win and you receive compensation, your lawyer will simply take his or her legal fees out of a percentage of your total settlement package. If we lose, you don’t owe us anything. Contact Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers today to schedule your free consultation.