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Maritime Injury Claims in Mississippi: 5 Mistakes to Avoid

Maritime Injuries Apr 30, 2021

If you work offshore, as a shipbuilder or in any other maritime occupation, you need to be careful if you’ve been injured on the job. It is easy to make mistakes, and making mistakes could leave you without the compensation you deserve. To protect yourself, you need to rely on the advice of an experienced Mississippi maritime injury attorney, and you should contact an attorney as soon as possible. Mistakes to Avoid When Seeking Compensation for a Maritime Injury in Mississippi At Willis Law Firm, our practice is devoted to helping maritime workers collect maximum benefits for their job-related injuries. Here are five costly mistakes our Mississippi maritime injury attorneys can help you avoid: 1. Waiting to Report Your Injury at Work In order to seek benefits, you need to report your injury at work as soon as possible. You need to make sure you do this correctly in order to protect your legal rights. If you leave out important information, or if you accidentally report information that isn’t accurate, this could lead to a denial of benefits. We can report your injury for you, and we can conduct a thorough investigation to make sure we have all of the information we need to help you collect payment. 2. Waiting to Seek Medical Treatment After getting injured on the job, it is also important that you seek medical treatment as soon as possible. In some cases, this will mean seeing a ship doctor or other “company doctor.” However, maritime laws […]

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Does Workers’ Compensation Cover Offshore Workers in Texas?

Jones Act Apr 23, 2021

Under Texas law, most employers are required to provide workers compensation coverage for most employees. Unfortunately, this does not apply to employees who work offshore. But, there are federal laws that protect offshore workers; and, if you’ve been injured on the job, a Texas offshore accident lawyer can help you seek benefits for your injury. How Do I Seek Benefits if I Am Not Eligible for Workers Compensation? In most cases, workers who get injured offshore can seek benefits under the Jones Act. The Jones Act is a federal law that Congress enacted in order to provide benefits to workers who do not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits because they work on the open water. What Benefits are Available Under the Jones Act? The Jones Act provides “maintenance and cure” benefits to all eligible offshore workers. These are similar to workers’ compensation benefits in that they are designed to help cover your medical expenses and a portion of your lost income. However, maintenance and cure benefits are typically much less than the benefits available through workers’ compensation. For this reason, the Jones Act affords additional options to injured workers. Under the Jones Act, offshore workers can also file claims for: Jones Act Negligence – If your employer is to blame for your injury (i.e. if it failed to provide adequate safety equipment or paired you with untrained crew members), a Texas offshore accident lawyer may be able to help you file a claim for Jones Act negligence. Unseaworthiness – If […]

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Do You Need an Attorney to File a Jones Act Claim in Louisiana?

Jones Act Apr 16, 2021

If you live in Louisiana and got injured working offshore, you may be able to collect financial compensation by filing a claim under the Jones Act. While some offshore workers try to file Jones Act claims on their own, this is a mistake—and it often proves incredibly costly. Your best option is to hire an experienced Louisiana maritime injury attorney to help you, and you can do so at no out-of-pocket cost. 5 Reasons to Hire an Attorney for Your Jones Act Claim in Louisiana Why should you hire an attorney for your Jones Act claim in Louisiana? Here are five important reasons to seek experienced legal representation: 1. There are Strict Legal Requirements for Filing a Jones Act Claim The Jones Act is a federal law that provides benefits to qualifying offshore and maritime workers. But, in order to secure Jones Act benefits, you need to meet the law’s strict requirements. If you make any mistakes when filing your Jones Act claim, you could end up without the benefits you deserve. 2. There are Different Types of Jones Act Claims Many offshore and maritime workers do not realize that there are different types of Jones Act claims. While maintenance and cure benefits are available under the Jones Act on a “no-fault” basis, these benefits are limited—and they are not the only benefits available. In many cases, injured workers can seek additional compensation for unseaworthiness and Jones Act negligence. 3. You Are Responsible for Calculating Your Losses When you file […]

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Jones Act Info for Florida Offshore or Dockside Workers

Jones Act Apr 9, 2021

If you work offshore or dockside in Florida and you have been injured on the job, you need to be very careful to protect your legal rights. Here is an overview of what you need to know and how an experienced Florida maritime injury lawyer can help you seek just compensation: Who is Covered by the Jones Act? The Jones Act covers anyone who is a permanent or significant worker on a vessel, such as a crew member. It provides maintenance and cure benefits to “seamen” who suffer work-related injuries, and it provides additional compensation to those who are injured due to their employers’ negligence or a vessel’s unseaworthiness. The Jones Act does not cover employees who only work on vessels temporarily, such as harbor workers. However, harbor workers may be eligible for benefits under the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA). What is a “Vessel?” Under the Jones Act, a “vessel” is any type of professional or personal watercraft. This includes recreational boats, barges, cargo ships, tanker ships, cruise ships, and tugboats, among many others. Fixed platforms on the water are not considered vessels under the Jones Act, but individuals who work on fixed platforms may be able to file claims under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA). What Does “Unseaworthy” Mean? A vessel may be considered “unseaworthy” if it is physically defective or is not properly equipped—lacking life jackets or first aid kits, for example. A vessel may also be considered unseaworthy if it is staffed […]

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What Benefits are Available to Port, Terminal and Dock Workers in Pennsylvania?

Maritime Injuries Mar 31, 2021

If you were injured working at a port, terminal or dock in Pennsylvania, you may be eligible for benefits under the Longshoreman & Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA). The LHWCA is a federal law that applies specifically to individuals employed in maritime occupations who do not work offshore or onboard vessels in navigation. A maritime accident lawyer can determine if you are eligible for benefits under the LHWCA; and, if you are, your lawyer can help you apply for maximum benefits. Benefits Available to Port, Terminal and Dock Workers Under the LHWCA Under the LHWCA, injured port, terminal and dock workers in Pennsylvania can receive three main types of benefits: 1. Medical Benefits The LHWCA provides access to medical benefits that cover, “reasonable and necessary medical, surgical, and hospital treatment and other medical supplies and services required by [a] work-related injury or illness.” You are entitled to receive treatment from a doctor of your choosing, and you are entitled to receive medical benefits until you fully recover or reach your maximum medical improvement. 2. Disability Benefits Disability benefits cover your loss of income if you are unable to work for more than three days as a result of your injury. Depending upon the extent of your injury, you may be eligible to receive: Temporary total disability benefits Temporary partial disability benefits Permanent total disability benefits Permanent partial disability benefits For most workers, disability benefits are calculated as two thirds of their weekly wage. However, this figure can be adjusted either […]

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Can I File for Workers Comp if I Work at a Port, Terminal or Dock in Wisconsin?

Maritime Injuries Mar 29, 2021

Working at ports, terminals and docks can be dangerous. From slip hazards to inexperienced coworkers, and from defective tools and equipment to unmaintained boats and ships, there are numerous issues that can lead to on-the-job injuries for port, terminal and dock workers in Wisconsin. If you have been injured on the job, you will need to determine what type of claim you can file, and it will be important for you to speak with a maritime accident attorney about your legal rights. Seeking Workers Comp as a Port, Terminal or Dock Worker in Wisconsin As a port, terminal or dock worker, you may not be eligible for benefits under Wisconsin’s workers’ compensation statute. Generally, this law applies to land-based workers employed in non-maritime occupations. Instead, recovering benefits for your injury may involve filing a claim under the Longshoreman & Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA). The LHWCA is a federal law that applies specifically to port, terminal and dock workers who are not eligible for state workers’ compensation benefits. Administered by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the LHWCA provides benefits similar to those available to non-maritime employees. Under the LHWCA, available benefits include: Medical Benefits – If you are eligible for LHWCA compensation, you can obtain coverage for the full cost of receiving treatment for your injury from a doctor of your choice. Disability Benefits – The LHWCA provides disability benefits to employees who are unable to perform their job duties as a result of their injuries. The amount of […]

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FAQs: How Much Can I Recover Under the OCSLA?

Maritime Law Mar 26, 2021

If you work on an oil rig, platform or other fixed structure offshore, recovering your losses after an on-the-job injury will probably involve filing a claim under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA). In this article, offshore accident lawyer David Willis explains what you need to know about your legal rights under the OCSLA. Who is Eligible to File a Claim Under the OCSLA? The OCSLA applies to offshore employees who work on rigs, platforms and other structures affixed to the outer continental shelf. It also applies to many offshore pipeline workers. In most areas around the United States, the outer continental shelf extends from about three to nine nautical miles from the coast to 200 nautical miles offshore. What Types of Benefits are Available Under the OCSLA? The benefits that are available under the OCSLA are similar to those that are available under state workers’ compensation laws. In most cases, injured workers who qualify for benefits under the OCSLA can recover: Medical Benefits – These benefits cover the cost of treating your injury. Disability Benefits – These benefits cover a portion of your lost wages if you are unable to work. Rehabilitation and Retraining Benefits – These benefits cover the cost of getting back to work if your injury prevents you from returning to your old job. Under the OCSLA, death benefits are also available to surviving family members. If you have lost a loved one working on the continental shelf, you will want to hire an offshore […]

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Can I File for Workers Comp if I Live in North Carolina and Work Offshore?

Maritime Injuries Mar 24, 2021

If you live in North Carolina and work offshore, you probably are not eligible for benefits under the state’s workers’ compensation law. However, you may be eligible for other types of benefits. Two federal laws – the Jones Act and the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) – protect offshore workers who get injured on the job. A maritime injury attorney can assess your rights under these laws and help you collect the benefits you deserve. Understanding Your Rights as an Offshore Worker in North Carolina Lots of North Carolina residents work offshore. Whether you fish for a living, run charters, work onboard a barge or dredge, or work onboard any other commercial vessel, if you are part of North Carolina’s maritime industry, you have clear legal rights. Your Rights Under the Jones Act For most offshore workers, these rights exist under the Jones Act. The Jones Act is a federal law that applies to offshore workers who are not eligible for state workers’ compensation benefits. If you spend a substantial amount of each workday onboard a vessel “in navigation” (which can include a vessel tied up at a dock or mooring, as long as it is capable of moving), then there is a good chance that the Jones Act protects you. Under the Jones Act, injured maritime workers in North Carolina can file three types of claims: “No fault” claims for maintenance and cure benefits Claims for full compensation based on “Jones Act negligence” Claims for full compensation based […]

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What are My Rights if I was Injured Working in the Charleston Harbor?

Maritime Injuries Mar 19, 2021

The Charleston Harbor on South Carolina’s coast is currently one of the busiest harbors in the country. The South Carolina Ports harbor deepening project has dredging ships in the harbor almost every day, and barges are a constant presence as dredging material needs to be carried away in order to reach the 48-foot final depth leading up to the North Charleston Terminal. While this means that there are currently lots of job opportunities in Charleston, it also means that the risk for workers in the Charleston Harbor is higher than usual. If you have been injured working in the Charleston Harbor, here is what you need to know about hiring a maritime injury lawyer to protect your legal rights: 1. Several Laws Protect Longshore, Harbor and Maritime Workers in South Carolina There are several laws that protect workers involved in all aspects of the maritime industry in South Carolina. Whether you run charters out to the reefs off of South Carolina’s coast, you work on a barge or tugboat, you work on a cargo ship or any other type of vessel, or you work at one of the Charleston area’s many ports or marinas, there is a law that is designed specifically to protect workers like you. In most cases, injured longshore, harbor and maritime workers in South Carolina will be able to collect benefits under one of the following laws: Jones Act Longshoreman & Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA) Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) South Carolina’s Workers Compensation […]

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Help for Barge Accidents in Texas

Uncategorized Mar 12, 2021

Barges are popular flat-bottomed vessels that were built mostly for the transportation of bulk goods, cargo, and sometimes passengers via rivers and canals. Millions of Americans work aboard barges or other vessels each year. Barge work can be dangerous. Unfortunately, sometimes barge workers are hurt during the course and scope of their employment in the barge industry. Texas barge workers injured while working should contact a Texas Barge Accident Lawyer immediately for guidance on their case. Accidents Facing Texas Maritime Workers Working on Barges Sometimes workers aboard barges are injured from malfunctions such as an engine breakdown which can cause safety issues to workers and can cause collisions with other vessels. Failure to properly inspect and maintain engines and other equipment on a barge can also cause workers to be injured.  Another reason barge workers may be injured includes faulty ventilation. Workers often have to work in confined and enclosed spaces. If they do not have adequate ventilation to create a safe atmosphere, workers can become ill by breathing in air that is filled with deadly hazards (such as toxic chemicals from barge storage tanks that were released into the air). Additionally, insufficient crew members aboard a vessel during a work trip is important for safety. Not having sufficient crewmembers aboard a barge to carry out necessary operations such as lifting heavy ropes and cables can create safety issues for workers aboard the barge. These issues can cause a variety of different accidents to occur causing serious injuries to maritime […]

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