Louisiana Maritime Accident Lawyer

Home    Home    Louisiana Maritime Accident Lawyer
Boating Accidents
Crew Wage Claims
Charter Boat Accidents
Jones Act
Deckhand Injuries
Fishing Boat Accidents
Cruise Ship Injuries
Limitation of Liability Act
Maritime Liens
Offshore Accidents
Oil Platform Injuries
Refusal to Pay Medical Expenses
Ferry Worker Injuries

Louisiana Maritime Accident Attorney

While marine vessels have an influential role in Louisiana’s economy, the employees who work on or near them can face serious injuries. Working on a ship can be hazardous, and employees regularly experience injuries due to slip and falls, burns, chemical exposure, and even explosions. If you have experienced injuries due to a maritime accident, contact a Louisiana maritime accident lawyer.

Louisiana Maritime Accident Lawyer

The Right Lawyer for Your Case

At Murphy Law Firm, we serve individuals throughout the entire state of Louisiana. We can come to you to hear more about your case and gather evidence on your behalf. Our team has served clients for three decades in many parishes across Louisiana. Our extensive legal knowledge and positive reputation in the field can help you get results for your personal injury claim. Become another member of the family by working with Murphy Law Firm.

The Jones Act

The Jones Act is a piece of legislation that protects seafarers. To be considered a seafarer, you must spend a considerable amount of your workday on a vessel in navigable waters. Solitary barges and oil rigs usually do not count for Jones Act eligibility, but they might still qualify for compensation under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA).

If an individual qualifies under the Jones Act, then they do not qualify for traditional workers’ compensation. Instead, there are multiple channels for which they might receive compensation, including:

  • A negligence claim filed by an employee against their employer under the Jones Act
  • Suing the vessel owner if they did not properly prepare their vessel for seaworthiness
  • Maintenance and cure

Employers under the Jones Act must provide their employees with a safe working environment. If the environment is unsafe and an employee is injured due to that environment, they could be liable for a Jones Act claim.

An unseaworthy vessel does not necessarily have to be broken down enough to be nonfunctional. If there is a small part of a vessel that was not properly maintained for how it is supposed to function and resulted in injuries, it could be susceptible to an unseaworthiness claim. This can happen if there is a part on the ship that breaks or wears down and the owner refuses to fix or replace it, leading to mechanical failure and injuries.

Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act

Many individuals who are not technically “seafarers” but still work near a vessel might be counted under the LHWCA. Who qualifies under the LHWCA can be complicated, and there are multiple ways that individuals are classified, either through their employment role (status) or where they work (situs). To learn whether you qualify for LHWCA benefits, contact a personal injury attorney who is experienced in maritime law, the Jones Act, and the LHWCA.

Depending on the scope of your injuries, you might be able to file a claim under the LHWCA. This can provide you with permanent or temporary disability payments. They might classify your injuries as total or partial, depending on the amount of work you can do after the injury. The act covers medical expenses associated with recovering from the injury as well as job training for individuals who are unable to return to their former line of work.

There is a strict time limit for how long you have to report your injuries and file a report, so you need to inform your employer as soon as possible. After this, consider working with a personal injury attorney who can help you navigate the LHWCA claim process. If your claim is denied, an attorney can provide advice and representation in a hearing if one is requested for your case.

Why Do I Need an Attorney?

Personal injury claims relating to maritime accidents can be especially complicated due to the nature of maritime laws in the U.S. There are many different rules and regulations at the state, federal, and even parish levels that dictate what you might be eligible for after a maritime injury. This is one reason why working with a personal injury lawyer is so important for your case. Their understanding of the law can help you determine your next steps.

They also have a greater understanding of what laws you might qualify under based on your job classification and work location. Dictating who is a seafarer and who is a maritime employee can be complicated due to the excessive laws outlining who qualifies under which provisions. Working with a maritime accident attorney can increase your odds of success by informing you of your status and which actions are most likely to recover benefits.

In addition, we understand the toll that a maritime accident can take on your physical and mental health. The last thing an injured employee wants to do is argue with their employer or their insurance company over benefits. An attorney can fight on your behalf for the benefits that you are entitled to. This can help the recovery process and reduce stress for a victim of a maritime accident.

Insurance companies have a known record of denying individuals’ claims. Don’t let a large company refuse to provide compensation for the injuries you went through. Hold companies accountable by working with a maritime accident attorney.

What Is Maintenance and Cure?

One of the provisions of the Jones Act allows workers to be compensated while they are recovering from their injuries. This is called maintenance and cure, which provides money for necessary living expenses like housing, food, and utilities. They are also entitled to benefits like medical care until they have either completely recovered or have improved enough that they are no longer expected to drastically improve in the future.

A positive aspect of maintenance and cure is that it applies to any injured seafarer, regardless of the reason for their injuries. If they decide to file a claim against their employer and lose, they still receive maintenance and cure benefits. These benefits are typically paid out to employees through their employers’ insurance companies. The exact amount can vary based on the cost of living in the area as well as any union rules.

There are some exceptions to this provision if the illness or injury existed prior to the individual’s employment as a seafarer, but most individuals who are injured as a result of their employment on a vessel qualify for maintenance and cure. However, insurance companies sometimes intentionally delay the process and hesitate to give seafarers their well-deserved benefits. If you are struggling to receive your maintenance and cure benefits, speak with a personal injury attorney.


What Is the Louisiana Rule of Maritime Law for Accidents?

There are several laws that apply to individuals who work in the maritime industry in Louisiana, namely the Jones Act and the Longshore & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act. Workers protected under these laws are not eligible for traditional workers’ compensation and must instead follow the rules stated in these acts. For more information on how these laws apply to you, contact a maritime injury lawyer.

What Should I Do If I Have Suffered an Injury Due to a Maritime Accident?

If you have been injured while at work on a vessel, let a supervisor know as soon as possible so that your injury is documented. Seek medical care to establish a record of treatment. Make sure you let a medical provider know about any injuries that you experienced due to the accident. After these issues are taken care of, speak to a personal injury attorney who works with maritime accidents to see if you can receive compensation for your injuries.

How Do I Know If I’m Protected Under the Jones Act After a Maritime Accident?

Generally, the Jones Act offers protection to seafarers who work on some kind of maritime vessel, which is defined as a vessel that is in operation and moves in navigable waters. This typically disqualifies individuals who work on structures like oil rigs or barges that do not move. The seafarer must also spend a considerable amount of time during their workday on the vessel itself. To see what types of maritime protections you qualify for, speak with an attorney.

What If My Employer Denied My Workers’ Compensation Claim for a Maritime Accident?

If your employer or their insurance company denies your workers’ compensation claim for a maritime accident, there are still options available to you. Speak with an attorney to learn about how you might be able to receive benefits. They can help you gather additional evidence to negotiate with your employer and their insurance company to increase your chances of success. Schedule a consultation with an attorney today for more information.

Seeking Justice for Victims of a Maritime Accident

State and federal maritime law can be difficult to sort through for someone inexperienced in law. Small details about your situation can dramatically alter the type of claim you need to file and how your claim should be addressed. There are also strict time limits for how long you have to file a claim for injuries incurred after a maritime accident. To learn more about what you could receive, schedule a consultation with Murphy Law Firm today.

We Will Come To You

Free Consultation

Proudly serving the state of Louisiana for nearly 30 years