FAQ Session: Answering 7 Common Questions About Maritime Accidents

Any sort of accident in the workplace can create a really challenging and even life-threatening situation but when you are at sea the dangers can be even more traumatic. When you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident scenario it often pays to call upon the services of competent maritime accident attorneys in order to get the help and compensation you are entitled to. 

Maritime Accidents, Maritime, Lifestyle
FAQ Session: Answering 7 Common Questions About Maritime Accidents
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Here is a look at some of the most common questions that you might need answers to when it comes to maritime accidents. 

Understanding the Jones Act 

A good starting point would be to talk about the relevance and importance of the Jones Act which is designed to protect seamen, in particular. It is not always clear whether you are classified as a Jones Act seaman, but if you are employed on a vessel that navigates there is a fair chance you qualify. A good lawyer will always be able to quickly tell you whether the Jones Act applies to you. 

What about offshore? 

The short answer when it comes to what rights you have as an offshore seaman or longshoreman worker it is often the case that you have rights as a maritime worker. This is usually the default position and should mean that you have certain rights, but a suitable maritime lawyer will be able to clarify the situation in greater detail.

Illness or injury 

There are many different ways to get into difficulties when you earn a living on water and your rights should entitle you to expenses under maintenance and cure rules. 

A common question relating to illness is whether you can claim when you already had a preexisting condition and your maritime lawyer should be able to press your employer to pay maintenance and cure benefits regardless. 

What sort of damages can you claim? 

You will obviously want to know what sort of damages you might be entitled to once it has been established that you are regarded as a Jones Act seaman. 

Typical damage awards relate to reimbursement of lost wages, medical expenses, and compensation for any pain and suffering you have experienced. 

When your employer doesn’t play ball 

Another typical question is what can be done when an employer ends maintenance and cure earlier than expected? 

The bottom line is that an employer is obligated to pay until you reach what is called Maximum Medical Improvement, which has to be decided by an independent doctor, if necessary. 

What about helicopter accidents? 

This is sometimes regarded as a gray area but it is a common means of transportation for maritime workers and an experienced lawyer should be able to help determine liability and responsibility when there is an accident. 

Who should I talk to? 

You will obviously want to know who to talk to when you have had an accident and the best course of action is often to talk to a lawyer as soon as possible. 

Talking to your employer’s doctor or signing an incident report could severely hamper your chances of compensation, which is why you need professional guidance immediately so that you know your rights.

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