Deckhands work aboard fishing vessels, ships, tugboats, and barges, which puts them at risk for many different types of accidents and injuries. Unfortunately, some vessel owners and companies fail to provide a safe work environment for their employees. As a result, when a deckhand is injured on the job, their employer and its insurance company may immediately begin working towards minimizing the amount of compensation they will need to pay the injured worker.
When you hire an established Iberia Parish deckhand maritime injury lawyer to represent your legal interests, your employer and the insurance company may realize that you intend to seek the maximum compensation that you are entitled to. With an experienced maritime injury attorney by your side, the playing field could be leveled.
Applying Federal Maritime Law and the Jones Act
As detailed in 46 U.S.C. § 30104 of the Jones Act, a deckhand who is injured as a result of negligence or unseaworthiness while working aboard an employer’s vessel is entitled to compensation for their injuries. Additionally, this act gives deckhands the right to bring legal action in state or federal court for the negligence of their employer. Compensation under the Jones Act may include:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Lost wages and future lost wage-earning capacity
- Past and future medical expenses
- Vocational retraining expenses
Maintenance and Cure Benefits
Additionally, most deckhands will be entitled to maintenance and cure benefits. While the injured deckhand is trying to reach maximum medical improvement, they have the benefit of payment of reasonable and necessary medical expenses as well as a daily living allowance.
Right to Choose Their Doctor
Unfortunately, insurers often try to rush injured workers through a short course of treatment and downplay their injuries. However, deckhands have the right to select their own doctor. They are not bound to see whomever the employer or insurance company selects.
Injured deckhands should consider speaking with their physician and an experienced deckhand maritime injury lawyer in Iberia Parish before signing any agreements with insurance companies or accepting sub-standard medical care. Ascertaining the extent of the injury will be an essential piece of determining compensation for a victim injured on the job.
Negligence is a familiar legal concept applied in injury cases. To prove negligence, the plaintiff and their Iberia Parish deckhand maritime injury attorney must first show that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff. An employer has an obligation to keep a safe workplace environment. If they fail to do so, they have breached their duty.
If their breach of duty leads to an injury, causation has been established. The final pillar in proving negligence is to show that the plaintiff suffered damages from their injury. These damages can be financial, physical, or emotional in nature. A skilled lawyer could help an injured individual recover damages.
Talk to a Iberia Parish Deckhand Maritime Injury Attorney Today
A compassionate and reliable Iberia Parish deckhand maritime injury lawyer is waiting to help you through this challenging time in your life. They understand the ever-mounting stress and pain you may be feeling and could fight on your behalf for compensation. Contact an attorney today for a case evaluation.