The scope of maritime law is not limited to the oceans or the Great Lakes. In the form of the Jones Act, maritime law applies to navigable inland lakes and rivers. Other specialized maritime laws, such as the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, also apply to seamen working on or around barges, freighters, ferries and tour boats.
These laws cover injured seamen and longshoremen and allow them to pursue legal action. It is usually to the workers' advantage to undertake this type of lawsuit, because standard workers' compensation benefits are usually more limited than those provided by maritime law. An experienced maritime attorney can advise you.
When bad things happen to good people, we're here to help.
At Duffield, Lovejoy, Stemple & Boggs, Attorneys at Law, our West Virginia lawyers help injured seamen, dock workers, pilots, engineers and other maritime workers obtain the benefits available to them after a commercial shipping or commercial barge accident. We build strong cases for our clients in pursuit of the compensation they need and deserve.
Jones Act cases are different from workers' compensation claims, because the injured seaman must prove negligence to obtain maintenance and cure (compensation for medical bills and living expenses). Maritime workers may also undertake legal action against the owner of a ship, which is responsible for providing a safe working environment.
The Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act is a no-fault system similar to workers' compensation, covering workers such as stevedores, welders and other onshore employees. As with workers' compensation, injured employees can also file third-party claims against negligent parties.
Our attorneys investigate the accident, evaluate the injured person's job duties and determine the best course of legal action. As lifelong residents of the region, we understand the questions and concerns of our injured clients. We take the time needed to address their anxieties and explain the legal process.
We urge seamen injured on Ohio River barges or other vessels to contact a lawyer before signing anything or accepting offers from their employers. Our attorneys have handled numerous Jones Act and Longshore Act claims and understand the issues involved.
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