If you or a loved one got hurt in a maritime accident, you may be looking into what kind of lawyer you should hire for your maritime injury lawsuit. While maritime injury claims generally fall under personal injury law, you should look for an attorney who understands the intricacies of maritime law and has a track record of dealing with maritime injury claims.
Specifically, the kind of lawyer you hire for a maritime injury lawsuit should have comprehensive knowledge of general maritime law and the Jones Act. This federal law provides legal rights to those injured or killed on the high seas. Depending on your specific claim, you may wish to ask your lawyer whether they have knowledge in other maritime laws and regulations, including but not limited to:
Which Damages are Available in a Maritime Injury Lawsuit?
Maritime injury claims can differ from personal injury claims on land.
Those working in the maritime industry generally are unable to file workers’ compensation claims. However, workers on the high seas are entitled to benefits, such as maintenance payments and medical care when they suffer an injury at work. Under the Jones Act, an injured worker or the family of a deceased worker could recover various damages, including:
- Lost income and lost future income
- Medical bills and future medical bills
- Limb loss
- Lost earning capacity
- Mental and physical anguish
Compensation will depend on the severity and permanence of a victim’s injuries and other circumstances of their accident. It also could include additional damages.
Cruise Ship Passengers
If you suffered injuries while on a recreational vessel, you may also wish to hire a lawyer with a track record of handling cases involving maritime laws and regulations. Passengers could potentially file a personal injury lawsuit against a vessel owner if their injury occurred due to a hazard on the vessel or crew negligence, for instance.
If you are a passenger looking for legal recourse, you should contact a maritime injury lawyer as soon as possible. Cruise ship passengers may face a short time frame for filing a lawsuit, depending on the limitations they agreed to when booking the cruise.
Passengers can find the details of these limitations on their ticket or by contacting the cruise line. However, in some instances, a dedicated maritime lawyer could help victims file a lawsuit, even after the time limit has run out.
Choosing the Right Lawyer for Your Maritime Injury Claim
Finding the right lawyer will require some research. However, a maritime attorney can help you see a claim through from beginning to end and take a weight off your shoulders. They can:
- Help you file and track insurance claims
- Handle the paperwork for your lawsuit
- Negotiate for a settlement on your behalf
- Represent you at court
A lawyer will also aim to calculate your damages correctly and gather the necessary evidence proving the at-fault party’s negligence.
What to Expect at the Initial Consultation
Many personal injury law firms and attorneys offer free consultations to assess your claim and offer you the opportunity to get to know the firm or attorney. When you are thinking of hiring a lawyer to represent you in a maritime injury claim, make sure you attend a free consultation before making any decisions. You will want to be prepared with a set of important questions that you can ask the attorney or firm, for example:
- What is your track record with maritime injury claims?
- Do you work on a “no-win-no-fee” basis, or do you charge an attorney’s fee upfront?
- Has your firm won maritime injury claims at trial?
- What are your fees if you win a claim?
You may also wish to pay attention to your feelings during the consultation. Do you feel positive after talking to the attorney, and did they listen to your questions and concerns? If the maritime injury lawyer or member of their team seemed unenthusiastic or brushed over your questions during your meeting with them, they may not be the right lawyer for you.
Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Can Protect Your Rights and Fight for Your Due
When individuals experience an accident and injury on the high seas, they will have a lot on their plate and could struggle to get what they deserve. Standing up against powerful corporations and vessel owners and their teams of lawyers can be intimidating and stressful.
However, you do not have to struggle with getting justice on your own. Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers can be there for you every step of the way, fighting for your rights and the compensation you deserve.
We can help to gather the evidence needed for your claim and build a comprehensive case against the at-fault party. If your claim goes to trial, we can represent you aggressively.
Contact Our Attorneys Today
Get the process started today and call Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers for a free case evaluation at (337) 777-7777.