According to the Louisiana Division of Administration, the Jones Act:
- May cover workers’ compensation claims for those who work in a marine setting, whether they are on a boat or not at the time of the accident
- Covers “seamen,” the term given to employees who work at least 30% of the time on the water and contribute in some capacity to the navigation or function of a marine vessel
- May provide coverage for the cost of lodging and food (“maintenance”), the cost of the injured party’s medical care (“cure”), and possibly other losses to be determined by a court
If you currently or formerly were a marine worker who was injured on the job, then you could be eligible for financial coverage under the Jones Act or other relevant statutes.
Much of Louisiana’s Workforce Depends on the Water
Due to its proximity to the Gulf of Mexico, Louisiana is inextricably linked to marine professions. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that Louisiana has the highest number of sailors and marine oilers of any state in the country.
Some of the occupations that may require extensive time on the water, and may qualify for coverage under the Jones Act include:
- Industrial sailors
- Oil rig workers
- Ferry tour guides
- Marine biologists
- Boat captain/navigator
Depending on your occupation, you could be eligible for workers’ compensation under the Jones Act or another statute governing workers’ compensation for marine workers.
Many of these occupations are vital to Louisiana’s economy, and the jobs themselves may be crucial to the workers who hold them. It is important that legal statutes be in place to protect these workers from injury when the laws of terrestrial Louisiana do not necessarily apply.
Negligence on the Water May Entitle You to Compensation
Just as employers on land have a duty to provide a reasonable measure of safety for their employees, those who employ others in a marine setting have the same obligation. It is worth mentioning that in many states, including Louisiana, you generally cannot sue your employer if you are injured while on the job. You can still pursue workers’ compensation, but very rarely can you take your employer to court for the cost of your damages stemming from an accident.
Still, employers are expected to uphold a duty of care when it comes to the safety of others.
The Jones Act can apply to workers who carry out responsibilities on the following marine vessels:
- A freight vessel
- A towboat
- A fishing vessel
- An oil tanker
- A barge
- Another type of watercraft covered under the Jones Act
This is not designed to be an exhaustive list. You still may be able to pursue compensation for an injury, even if you were injured in a marina or on a dock.
For a free legal consultation, call (337) 777-7777
Bringing Legal Action Under the Jones Act
Being injured while on the job can have a variety of negative implications on your life. If you were injured in the course of your job, then you may:
- Be out of work and unable to earn an income for an extended period of time
- Have direct medical expenses without the funds to pay for them
- Have a spouse or children that depend on your income to pay for various necessities, such as food and lodging
- Be entitled to compensation through your losses
You have the right to speak with a lawyer if you want more information about the Jones Act and other statutes under which you could be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.
Call Our Team at Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Today
Our roots in Louisiana run deep. At Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers, we take pride in defending the workers who make our state’s economy run. If you have been injured while on the job, some of the tasks our legal team can undertake for you include:
- Drawing up and filing a motion to initiate a lawsuit, if necessary
- Collecting evidence that assigns negligence to a responsible party
- Estimating the cost of your accident-related damages
- Consulting experts on maritime workers’ compensation issues
- Representing you in settlement negotiations or at trial
- Protecting your rights and pursuing any compensation to which you may be entitled
If your case is successful, you may be able to recover the expenses associated with your injuries. Our team wants to get started looking into your case today. For a free case review, call Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers at (337) 777-7777.