Maritime Acts

Admiralty Attorney Explains Maritime Laws

Crew members working aboard ships, vessels, rigs and platforms understand how dangerous their jobs can be. When you work on or near the water the environment and conditions can be hazardous. Accidents are an everyday part of life and can result in injuries that are severe and life-altering.

While most seamen and maritime workers know they have legal rights when they are injured, it can be challenging to determine which laws apply to the accident or injury. If you have been injured, you need to be sure that you are working with the right laws before you can file a legal action. An experienced admiralty or maritime injury attorney at The Willis Law Firm can review your situation to identify all laws and legal theories that may apply in your case.

Attorney David Willis is a seasoned legal professional with over 30 years of experience who has an in-depth understanding of the laws and regulations governing these types of injuries. He will carefully review your accident to determine the applicable laws and the best strategy for moving forward. Depending upon where you were injured and the type of work you were doing, one or more of the following maritime acts may apply in your case:

The Jones Act. The Jones Act is a federal statute that protects seamen who are injured while in the service of a ship or vessel. The Jones Act governs the liability of marine employers and vessel operators when a work-related injury, illness or death occurs.

Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act (LHWCA). Longshoremen, harbor workers and other individuals who work on docks, offshore platforms. shipping terminals, ports and shipyards are protected under the Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act. The LHWCA is a federal workers’ compensation program that provides benefits and compensation when these employees are injured on the job.

Suits in Admiralty (SIAA) / Public Vessels Act (PVA). The SIAA and PVA allow workers who are injured on U.S. owned vessels or injured in situations involving the U.S. government, including the U.S. Coast Guard, to file suit against the U.S. government to recover compensation for their injuries.

Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA). The Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) extends protections to maritime workers who are injured while working on the Outer Continental Shelf.

Death on the High Seas Act (DOHSA). The Death on the High Seas Act applies to deaths that occur more than three miles from U.S. shores. The DOHSA permits the spouse, parents, children, and dependent relatives of the deceased worker to recover certain damages when a death occurs in international waters.

Military Sealift Command. The U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command provides ocean transportation to the Department of Defense. Employees of the Military Sealift Command work in civil service positions and are not active duty military members. There are special legal recourses available when an employee of the Military Sealift Command is injured on the job.

Admiralty Extension Act (AEA). The Admiralty Extension Act is a federal statute that extends protection to workers who are injured by a ship or vessel while working on the land, including maritime workers who sustain injuries while loading or unloading cargo.

Defense Base Act. The Defense Base Act provides compensation and medical benefits to employees of U.S. civilian contractors and subcontractors who are injured overseas while working on behalf of the U.S. government.

Limitation of Liability Act. The Limitation of Liability Act was enacted by Congress in 1851 to protect the shipping industry. Although the Act was passed long ago, vessel owners still try to use the Act to limit their liability for damages when crewmen, passengers and guests are injured.

Schedule a Free Consultation with Willis Law Firm

Willis Law Firm has over 30 years of experience representing workers nationwide who have been injured on or near the water. We offer free consultations and any information you share with us will be kept strictly confidential. If you have been injured, schedule an appointment with our firm today by calling 1-800-468-4878 so we can help you determine the best avenues of legal recourse available in your case.

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