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Fourchon Maritime Injury Lawyer

Most of the work performed at marine terminals may require longshoremen to load and unload cargo from ships and barges. The Centers for Disease Control reports that the process of unloading and loading cargo requires a highly trained and skilled level of labor to avoid injury. As a result, workers at marine terminals can have a higher fatality, injury, and illness rates than other workers in the United States.

If you suffer injury caused by an accident in the maritime industry, it may be essential for you to contact a Fourchon maritime injury lawyer. Experienced personal injury attorneys in Louisiana may understand the unique factors that surround maritime injuries and can help you navigate through various complex legal processes to obtain adequate compensation for your injury.

Potential Risks of Maritime Employment

Longshoremen and other terminal workers may be exposed to the following injury risks:

  • Handling hazardous materials
  • Subjection to extreme temperatures
  • Heavy lifting injuries
  • Repetitive motion injuries
  • Unsafe equipment

Maritime Injury Laws

The Jones Act and the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) both provide maritime workers compensation for work-related injuries. However, the LHWCA excludes from its coverage a “master or member of a crew of any vessel.”

Crew members are covered by the Jones Act. Those covered under the Jones Act must qualify under the definition of “seaman,” which can be considered those who are doing the ship’s work by contributing to the function of the vessel or the accomplishment of its mission.

Although the Jones Act and LHWCA are similar, it is important to know which one may apply to a specific situation. A Fourchon maritime injury lawyer can help an individual determine this and assist with proper and timely filing procedures.

Filing a Maritime Injury Claim Under the Jones Act

Those covered under the Jones Act can file a lawsuit in state or federal court. This claim must be filed within three years of the date of injury.

In the meantime, the accident or injury should be reported to the captain immediately or the claim may be denied. An injured seaman also must get medical treatment as soon as possible. Even if the ship is out to sea, the ship’s captain is responsible for making sure injuries receive prompt medical attention.

LHWCA Claim Process

Those planning to file a Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation claim must follow a list of steps and complete specific forms on time. Failure to do so can jeopardize their right to compensation.

Medical Treatment

An injured worker has the right to choose their own doctor. If the injury is an emergency, medical treatment should be obtained immediately. However, official authorization must be granted for medical treatments, even if this is given after the initial emergency treatment.

Employer Notification and OWCP

Employers should be notified of the injury immediately and written notice must be provided to the employer within 30 days. An official claim must be filed with The Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP) within one year of the date of injury.

Death Benefits

The families of maritime workers who suffered fatal injuries can file a Claim for Death Benefits with the OWCP within one year after the date of death. The OWCP may require the following evidence:

  • Marriage certificate
  • Birth certificates of eligible survivors
  • Medical records of the deceased
  • Proof of funeral expenses

Seeking the Help of Fourchon Maritime Injury Attorneys

If you suffer from a maritime injury, or if you lost a loved one in a maritime accident, deadlines and paperwork may likely be the last thing on your mind. The tedious nature of filing a claim may be too much to deal with after such a tragic incident.

Do not let the aftermath of this tragic event affect your ability to move on with your life. Let a Fourchon maritime injury lawyer handle the legal process, so you and your family can effectively pursue the compensation necessary to recover. Call today to get started.