Get Legal Help After an Offshore Accident from an Experienced Offshore Injury Attorney
When an accident occurs offshore, the injuries can be devastating, life-changing and permanent. In addition to tremendous pain and suffering, workers who are involved in an offshore accident face major medical bills, the loss of income and more. If you or someone you care about has been injured in an offshore accident, you need to speak with an experienced offshore injury lawyer as soon as possible. While the legal system can seem overwhelming, particularly when you are dealing with a serious injury, a skilled offshore accident attorney can guide you through every step the process, helping you to make the right decisions for you and your family members.
Assisting Offshore Workers and Their Families
The Willis Law Firm has decades of experience representing victims of offshore accidents. While the laws governing these types of injuries can be complex, our firm has the knowledge and resources necessary to help you recover the compensation you deserve.
When we handle an accident case we work to build a strong team who will carefully review and investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding your offshore injuries. Whether you have been injured in an offshore construction accident, a serious slip and fall, an oil rig drilling accident or explosion, or any other type of offshore accident, we understand what you are going through. Our legal team works hard to develop a successful case against all parties responsible for your injuries.
Common Offshore Claims Covered By the Jones Act and Other Laws
The Jones Act (and the other laws that protect offshore workers) apply to all types of offshore accidents. If you were injured offshore, the question is not how you were injured, but rather what kind of claim you can file. All of the most common types of offshore accidents are covered, including:
- Slips and Trips – Slips and trips are common onboard vessels, offshore cranes and platforms, oil rigs, and other offshore locations. Common injuries include soft tissue injuries (i.e., sprains and tears), bone fractures and concussions.
- Falls from Height – Falls from height can cause severe and debilitating injuries. If you fell down the stairs, from an upper deck or from a height in any other scenario, you can hire a Jones Act lawyer to help you seek just compensation.
- Falls Overboard – Falls overboard can give rise to Jones Act and other claims as well. This includes falls overboard from ships, boats, platforms, rigs, and other floating and fixed workplaces offshore.
- Fires and Explosions – Fires and explosions on vessels, oil rigs and other offshore workplaces can be extremely dangerous for obvious reasons. If you suffered severe burns in an offshore fire or explosion, you may be entitled to significant compensation.
- Injuries from Falling, Flying and Swinging Objects – Falling supplies, materials, safety equipment and other items can cause head and other injuries. The same is true of flying debris, swinging cranes and booms, and other moving objects.
- Equipment and Machinery Accidents – Equipment and machinery accidents are common causes of injuries onboard fishing vessels, cargo ships, oil rigs and numerous other offshore workplaces.
- Exposure to Toxic Substances or Extreme Temperatures – Exposure is a serious concern for offshore workers as well. This includes exposure to both toxic substances and extreme temperatures.
Most Common Offshore Accident Injuries Explained by an Offshore Injury Lawyer
Even in fair weather and on calm waters, maritime workers are at high risk of injury, especially when negligence is involved. Compounding the danger is the fact that maritime workers live and work far from the nearest emergency personnel and medical facilities. It often takes hours for help to arrive via Coast Guard vessels or helicopters.
Like other maritime accidents, the injuries caused by offshore accidents are often similar to the injuries caused by typical personal injury accidents, yet still tend to fall within a particular set of types, including:
- Hypothermia from falls overboard
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head injuries
- Neck injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Broken bones
- Crushed limbs
- Loss of limbs/amputation
- Cuts and lacerations
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Respiratory illnesses
- Lung damage from chemical fumes or smoke inhalation
Any of these offshore injuries can lead to extensive and difficult recovery time, placing unnatural stress on injured maritime workers and their families. You owe it to yourself to consult with an offshore injuries law firm to discuss compensation options.
Breaking Down the Role of Your Offshore Injury Attorney
An offshore injuries lawyer is a lawyer who focuses his or her practice on representing injured maritime workers. The laws that protect maritime workers differ from those that protect employees on land, and recovering just compensation after an offshore accident requires an in-depth understanding of the laws that apply. It also requires familiarity with common types of offshore accidents and the procedures involved in investigating an accident that occurs on a vessel, rig or platform in the open water.
Why Do Seamen Need an Offshore Accident Attorney?
If you are a seaman and you have been injured on the job, there are several reasons why you need an offshore injury attorney. First, you need to avoid mistakes that could jeopardize your legal rights. An experienced attorney will be able to tell you what to do and what not to do so that you remain eligible for just compensation.
Second, you need an offshore accident attorney to deal with your employer and its insurance company on your behalf. Recovering compensation for an offshore accident – including “no-fault” maintenance and cure benefits – is not an easy or straightforward process. Companies do everything they can to avoid paying for seamen’s injuries. An experienced offshore injury attorney will be able to overcome their defense tactics and take your claim to court if necessary.
Third, you need to know how much you can recover. While some seamen will be limited to collecting maintenance and cure benefits, others will be entitled to significantly more. An offshore injury attorney can accurately calculate your losses for you and can make sure you are seeking the full compensation you deserve.
Who is Liable for Your Offshore Accident?
After you’ve sustained an offshore injury you may be looking for who to hold responsible. The honest answer is “it varies.” It’s our job at Willis Law Firm as your offshore injury lawyer to determine liability for your accident and resulting injuries. The following entities could be potential defendants in your lawsuit:
- A coworker who failed to follow safety protocol
- Your supervisor who was negligent or reckless
- An employer who failed to properly protect workers from injuries
- A vessel captain who was responsible for a rig or vessel accident
- The manufacturing company of a defective product/equipment
What Should You Do if Your Employer Contests Your Injuries?
Some employers of offshore workers are wealthy companies who can afford high powered attorneys to dispute cases where workers are injured. If your employer contests your injuries sustained while working offshore, contact a Louisiana offshore injury attorney at Willis Law Firm immediately for a case evaluation. Our firm has experience representing injured maritime workers against “the big guys.” An experienced lawyer can help advocate for your rights, filing a lawsuit if necessary.
What Types of Accidents Do Offshore Injury Lawyers Handle?
Offshore injury lawyers handle all types of maritime accidents. This includes accidents onboard, accidents in the water, and accidents involving all jobs and occupations. They handle accidents that involve coworkers’ mistakes, and they handle accidents involving safety violations, inadequate vessel maintenance, horseplay and other issues.
Is an Offshore Injury Attorney Expensive?
No, it is not expensive to hire an offshore accident attorney. In fact, it costs nothing out of pocket. Offshore accident attorneys provide contingency-fee representation, which means their clients only pay if they win.
How Do I Find an Offshore Injuries Lawyer Who Can Help Me?
Many offshore accident lawyers only practice in certain cities or states, which can make it difficult to find an experienced lawyer who can help you. At Willis Law Firm, we handle offshore accident cases on behalf of seamen nationwide. From the Atlantic to the Pacific and from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico, we can help you if you’ve been injured working offshore.
Should I Contact an Offshore Injury Attorney?
If you’ve been injured working offshore, you should absolutely contact an attorney. You have no reason not to do so. You can get a free initial consultation (all information you share will be held strictly confidential); and, if you have a claim, you won’t have to pay any fees or costs unless your attorney helps you recover just compensation.
What to Do After an Offshore Accident
1. Report the Accident to Your Employer Promptly
When you get injured on the job, it is important to promptly report the accident to your employer. This helps to avoid questions about how and when you got hurt, and it helps to ensure that you will receive compensation as soon as possible.
Stick to the facts when reporting your offshore accident. Do not exaggerate any details, do not make assumptions, and do not misrepresent what happened. If you make false statements to your employer, this could jeopardize your claim for benefits.
2. Make Sure Your Employer’s Account of the Accident is Accurate
Just as you need to ensure that your account of the accident is accurate, you need to ensure that your employer’s understanding of the accident is correct, too. With this in mind, you should ask for a copy of the accident report and review it carefully. If anything is incorrect, or if any key details were omitted, you may want to prepare a written statement to put on file.
3. See Your Own Doctor
If you were injured offshore, you may have had no choice but to see your employer’s company doctor. However, once you get back to shore, you should also see your own doctor right away. Unfortunately, company doctors do not always have employees’ best interests in mind. As a result, you will want to see a doctor of your choosing for an independent diagnosis.
4. Make Sure You Don’t Go Back to Work Too Soon
Once you receive a diagnosis, you need to resist the temptation (or pressure from your employer) to return to work too soon. You are entitled to all of the rest and recovery time you need to heal properly.
5. Make Sure You Follow All of Your Doctor’s Advice
In addition to staying home from work (if recommended), you should carefully follow your doctor’s other advice as well. This includes everything from taking your prescribed medications to attending follow-up appointments as scheduled.
6. Keep Track of Your Medical Needs and Expenses
When you have an offshore injury claim, it is important to keep track of your medical needs and expenses. Keep all of your medical records and bills in a file, and do not hesitate to call your doctor’s office if you have questions.
7. Consult with an Offshore Injuries Lawyer to Discuss Your Potential for Jones Act Compensation
Recovering your losses after an offshore accident requires the help of an attorney who is experienced in handling Jones Act and other maritime injury claims. At Willis Law Firm, your initial consultation is free and confidential, and you pay nothing unless we help you collect financial compensation.
Contact The Willis Law Firm for a Free Consultation with a Winning Offshore Injury Lawyer
If you have been injured in an offshore accident you should speak with an offshore injury attorney as soon as possible. These types of accidents are serious and complex so you need a strong legal team on your side. When you work with our off-shore injury law firm, an experienced offshore accident attorney will carefully explain what is happening at every stage of the legal process. We will protect your interests and fight to get you a fair and just recovery from all parties responsible for your suffering. Contact our firm today at 1-800-468-4878. Our initial consultations are always free and completely confidential.
Our offshore accident attorneys are available to help clients nationwide, including major maritime employment states such as Texas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia and Alabama.