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Hitchcock Maritime Injury Lawyer

The Hitchcock area is home to one of the busiest ports in the country, and the shipping and fishing industries employ thousands of local people. This industry can be dangerous but maritime workers who get injured on the job are protected by federal law.

If you work offshore, on a ship, or on the docks, a Hitchcock maritime injury lawyer could represent you when you get hurt at work. Maritime law, also called admiralty law, is very different from standard personal injury law, and you need an attorney with specific experience advocating for maritime workers.

Common Maritime Worker Injuries

Working on a ship or at the docks is among the most dangerous jobs in the country. Many maritime workers do hard physical labor with heavy machinery while exposed to the elements. Even onboard cruise ship workers face the risks of bad weather, close quarters, and long periods offshore.

Maritime accidents come in many forms and some common situations a Hitchcock attorney encounters include the following:

  • Hearing loss
  • Repetitive stress injuries from lifting
  • Fractures from slips or trips and falls
  • Deep wounds from fishing equipment or other gear
  • Respiratory problems or organ damage from exposure to toxins
  • Crushing injuries from heavy equipment
  • Head injuries from falling or blowing equipment or debris
  • Burns
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Illness from a contagion onboard
  • Drowning or near drowning

Any injury arising out of work in the shipping, fishing, or cruise industries could result in a claim under maritime law. But different laws govern different industry jobs and the compensation a worker recovers depends on which law governs their situation. A Hitchcock attorney could explain an injured maritime worker’s legal options based on the facts of their specific case.

Laws Protecting Injured Maritime Workers

People who work in shipping on shore in an office setting do not qualify for the protections of the federal laws benefitting workers in the maritime industries. If they suffer on-the-job injuries, they must turn to Worker’s Compensation (if the employer subscribes) or file a personal injury claim (if they are a non-subscriber). People who work on the docks, onboard ship, or on a drilling platform can take advantage of federal protections, based on their job.

Jones Act

The Jones Act protects “seamen,” which the law does not define, but typically means an employee who spends at least 30 percent of their working time at sea. Seamen with workplace injuries are entitled to maintenance and cure, which covers a portion of their wage while they cannot work, and medical treatment for their injury.

When an employer’s negligence led to the injury, 46 United States Code § 30104 allows a seaman to sue the employer for not maintaining a seaworthy ship. Any unsafe condition resulting from owner or employer negligence could render a vessel unseaworthy. If a Hitchcock worker could prove their vessel was unseaworthy, they could receive compensation for all medical treatment, full reimbursement of lost wages, and payment for their pain, suffering, and other non-economic losses.

Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA)

Industry employees who work on the docks, in marine transportation, or spend little time at sea could seek benefits from the LHWCA. This law provides a partial wage if an injury prevents a claimant from working, as well as free medical care. When an injury prevents a covered worker from resuming their former job, the LHWCA provides disability benefits. The family of a worker killed on the job due to a work-related injury or condition receives a death benefit.

Outer Continental Shelf Land Act

Workers on fixed platforms more than three miles off the coast of Texas or Florida could seek compensation for work-related injuries under the Outer Continental Shelf Land Act (OCSLA). The OCSLA provides benefits similar to the LHWCA for rig and platform workers who sustain injuries or develop work-related medical conditions.

Contact a Hitchcock Maritime Injury Attorney After a Severe Accident

Your work is vital to the economy, and you deserve compensation if your job causes an injury or illness. Federal laws protect maritime workers, but it can be tricky to access the benefits you deserve.

Get in touch with a Hitchcock maritime injury lawyer immediately if you sustained an injury on the job or developed a work-related illness while at sea.

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