Injuries that occur at sea are a bit different from those that happen on land. When a worker gets injured working in a factory, that worker is most likely able to get compensation through workers’ compensation laws. However, when injured at sea on a boat or other type of maritime vessel, the injured worker will most likely file a case through the Jones Act.
And though there are several instances where a seamen’s injuries could be covered through workers’ compensation, the Jones Act undoubtedly provides a greater amount of compensation. In exchange, however, filing a case through the act does require a lawyer who is an expert at the subject. The following therefore gives a brief guide as to who is eligible of such compensation and what one is to do if they do get injured at sea.
Who Is Eligible?
To be eligible to file a case under the Jones Act, you have to be considered a “seaman.” Workers who are considered to be seamen, such as fishermen, shipping workers and transporters, and cruise ship operators; must be in a vessel that is navigating while at sea. Injuries that take place while docked in most cases will not be covered under the Jones Act.
How to File a Case?
Normally you can be guaranteed compensation if you are considered a seaman, whose profession involves working at sea for a majority of their professional career. You also must have suffered injuries on a vessel that wasn’t seaworthy.
A vessel can be considered not seaworthy if parts of the vessel are damaged, overly outdated, or if the crew is not properly trained to do their tasks aboard the vessel.
Of course, you must prove that it was negligence on part of your employees that caused your injury, so getting a professional maritime lawyer is essential.
Types of Compensation
After an injury has taken place, your employees is required to fully pay for any of your injuries as well as providing reasonable accommodations that include, but not limited to: living arrangements, wheelchairs, and any medication needed to recuse pain.
If you are out at sea for a specific number of days, your employees is required to pay any wages you would have earned if it weren’t for your injury. In this way, you are entitled to any future earnings that the injury has deprived of you.
Also, know that damages done to you doesn’t just include physical harm, but also includes any emotional, social, and psychological harm that the injury has done to you.
So Now What?
Once an injury has occurred, it is imperative to report it at once and seek medical help. Also, gather names of witnesses and get in contact with a lawyer who is certified to practice maritime law to begin any claims.