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The SMS Legal Blog


The Future of Houston’s Traffic

February 8th, 2016 by Ruth

Houston is known for having one of the worst traffic problems in Texas. The various highways and toll roads that weave throughout the city have lead to constant traffic congestion during busy evenings and weekends.   Here are some recommendations to handle the congestion: leave earlier to your destination carpool to decrease the amount of

offshore rig in twilight

Filing A Lawsuit Under the Jones Act

February 1st, 2016 by Ruth

Working on the sea can be just as rewarding as it is dangerous. Working seaman should protect themselves from workplace injury by becoming familiar with the Jones Act.   What is the Jones Act? The Jones Act provides a seaman with the ability to file a claim for any injuries that occur while at sea.

Jones act

Get The Facts on The Jones Act

January 22nd, 2016 by Ruth

If you or a loved one have been injured at sea and want to pursue legal action under The Jones Act, there are a few things you must know. The Jones Act allows injured seamen to sue their employers for personal injury damages since seamen are not entitled to workers’ compensation benefits under state or

personal injury

Facts on Premises Liability

January 21st, 2016 by Ruth

Premises liability is the type of personal injury case that occurs when a person is injured as a result of a hazardous condition on someone else’s property. Being injured on someone’s property does not automatically make them responsible for your injury. There are many different types of personal injury cases that can be classified as

Chemical explosion

Pasenda Chemical Explosion

January 18th, 2016 by Ruth

On Saturday afternoon, this past weekend about 1,000 gallons of an oil-based cleaning solution leaked during a routine function at PeroxyChem, causing an explosion.One contractor was pronounced dead at the scene while another contractor and two employees were rushed to the emergency room. One person suffered from a broken arm and the other two were

Refinery Accident

Types of Injuries from Construction Refinery Accidents

January 13th, 2016 by Ruth

Workers who work on construction refinery sites are constantly put in very dangerous situations and must always be aware of their surroundings and be attentive in case of an accident. According to labor statistics, this industry had the highest death toll in the United States between 2003-2010. 2006 was the most dangerous year with 125


Sources of Compensation for Injured Seamen

December 30th, 2015 by Emilia

All maritime workers are at high risk of on the job injury especially because they can be far away from medical attention after an emergency occurs. Seamen are protected by The Jones Act, which allows them to seek compensation for their injuries caused by their employers or coworkers on a vessel. A victim must be


Carriage of Goods by Sea Act (COGSA)

December 23rd, 2015 by Emilia

The Carriage of Goods by Sea Act or COGSA for short is the statute in the United States that governs the rights and responsibilities between shipowners and shippers of cargo. The statute covers ocean shipments to and from the United States. It states that the vessel is not liable as long as the carrier took

Maritime Statute of Limitations

Maritime Statute of Limitations

December 22nd, 2015 by Ruth

If you or a loved one have been injured at sea and want to pursue legal action against the other party, then you must be aware of the legal deadline.   What is a Statute of Limitations? The maritime or admiralty statute of limitations is the law pertinent to a specific jurisdiction that limits the

Schechter, McElwee, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P.

El Faro Deadline Extended

December 17th, 2015 by Amanda Coleman

A U.S. District Court extended the deadline to file all claims related to the sinking of S.S. El Faro by 90 days.  This extension gives the family members of the victims until February 16, 2016 to evaluate and file their claims. All 33 crewmembers onboard El Faro died when the 40-year-old cargo ship sank east