Injured seamen are entitled to certain benefits under the terms of the Jones Act. In general, injuries suffered while in service to a ship in navigable waters are covered, regardless of whether they occur at sea or while performing work-related duties on land. However, ship owners and operators aren't always forthcoming with accurate information regarding claims under the Jones Act. At the Law Offices of John W. Merting, P.A., we represent seamen in personal injury claims under the terms of the Jones Act. As your lawyer, Mr. Merting asserts your rights in order to protect your job and ensure you aren't given misinformation that could compromise your claim or case. In cases involving negligence on the part of a ship's owner or operator, we seek additional damages to cover long-term disability needs and pain and suffering.
If you've been injured in an on-the-job accident, contact admiralty and maritime injury attorney John W. Merting today to schedule an appointment to discuss your case.
Claims Under General Maritime Law — What Injured Seamen Are Entitled To
Seamen are entitled to benefits under general maritime law, regardless of whether or not a ship's owner or operator was at fault. These benefits can be if the crew person "falls ill while in the service of the ship..." These payments are not just available for injuries! These benefits include:
- Transportation: Costs associated with transport to a medical care facility. This includes ambulances, helicopters, and other means of transportation. Repatriation expenses to return the seaman to his home can also be obtained or recovered.
- Maintenance: Injured seamen are entitled to the value of what their daily food and shelter costs would have been if they had not been injured.
- Cure: The owner or operator of a ship must pay for an injured seaman's medical expenses until he or she has returned to a maximum level of health. Health care costs could include expenses related to medical equipment, prescription drugs, physical therapy, emergency room treatment, in-home nursing care and other costs related to medical treatment.
Our Attorney Can Protect Your Job And Your Rights
Shipping companies realize that an injured employee costs them money. As a result, it's not unheard of for an employer to misinform injured seamen of the benefits available to them in the hopes they will quit or agree to not file a claim. If your employer tries to tell you that you can only see a company approved doctor, or that a company nurse must accompany you to your doctor's appointments, they are misinforming you.
Likewise, your supervisor may tell you that they need to interview you in order to file a report. After listening to your story, they may change certain facts or add others and then ask you to sign the statement without giving you adequate time to carefully review it. In each instance, the company is looking for anything they can use to deny your claim or place the blame on you for causing an accident. This is especially true in cases involving dangerous conditions, safety violations, defective equipment, inadequate crew, all of which are examples of unseaworthiness of a vessel.
Contact Seamen Claims Attorney John W. Merting Today
We have the experience and resources needed to establish our client's claims under general maritime law. If you have questions about what your employer has told you or, if you are in the process of filing a claim, contact admiralty law attorney John W. Merting today.