Have you or a loved one suffered an injury or illness during the course of employment on a vessel or other floating movable structure? You may be entitled to compensation under a federal statute known as the “Jones Act.” Maritime workers who have suffered an injury or illness during the course of employment on a vessel or other floating movable structure may be entitled to compensation under the “Jones Act.” The Jones Act is not “workers compensation” in the traditional sense. It was designed for maritime workers and seamen to be compensated under specific circumstances.
Herbert & McClelland LLP represents people and injured workers throughout Houston who have suffered a personal injury under the “Jones Act”. If you or a loved one have been injured during the course of employment at sea or on a vessel or other floating movable structure and have sustained physical injury, disfigurement, disability, damages, losses, including pain and suffering, contact Herbert & McClelland LLP. You need experienced personal injury attorneys to represent your Jones Act claim. CALL 713-987-7100 for a free evaluation of your case.
The United States Congress enacted the Jones Act in 1920 as an addition to the Federal Employers’ Liability Act (“FELA”). The purpose of the Jones Act is to protect injured or ill “seaman.” A “seaman” is generally a person employed on a vessel or movable other structure navigated or floating on an ocean or intra-coastal waterway who contributes to the vessel or structure’s function or mission. The definition of a “seaman” generally does not include a longshoreman, pilot, or other person who works on a stationary platform.
The Jones Act typically applies, but is not limited to, seaman employed to contribute to the function or mission of:
- Freighters, Ships, Semi-submersibles
- Jack-ups, Lay Barges, Tankers
- Research Vessels
- Riverboat Casinos, Restaurant Boats, Cruise Ships
- Tug Boats, Tow Boats
- Shrimp Boats, Fishing Boats and
- Crew Boats, Ferries, Water Taxis
The Act generally allows an injured or ill seaman, or the representative of a deceased seaman, to sue to recover damages from his employer if the injuries, illness, or death occurred or arose during the course of the seaman’s employment and were caused by:
- the employer’s negligence;
- a co-worker’s negligence;
- an unsafe condition on or of the vessel (referred as an unseaworthy claim);
- inadequate or unavailable medical care; or
- the employer’s failure to rescue or search for the seaman if he fell or jumped overboard.
The injured or ill seaman is typically eligible to recover money for the following:
- medical expenses;
- lost wages;
- loss of future earning capacity;
- past and future physical pain, suffering, and disfigurement; and
- past and future emotional distress.
The loved ones or other representative of a deceased seaman are typically eligible to recover money for:
- medical expenses;
- funeral and burial expenses;
- the seaman’s conscious pain and suffering;
- wages lost between the date of injury and the date of death;
- the money they would have received had the seaman not died; and
- the value of the seaman’s intangible services (e.g. caring for children, household chores).
Fortunately, the Act also allows seaman or their loved ones whose injury, illness, or death was not caused by the reasons set forth above to recover medical expenses and lost wages incurred between the date of the injury or discovery of the illness and the date the seaman reaches maximum medical improvement or, the case of a deceased seaman, the date of death. This recovery is referred to as “maintenance and cure.” No additional damages are available.
A Jones Act claim usually must be filed within three years of the date the seaman was injured or the date he discovered the illness. In addition to a Jones Act claim, the loved ones or other representative of a seaman who died may also seek compensation under general maritime law, Death on the High Seas Act, or other applicable federal statute.
If you have been injured and believe your injury falls under the Jones Act, Herbert & McClelland LLP may be able to help you get compensation for your Jones Act Claim. Don’t just rely on the insurance company or your employer to compensate you for your injury losses and damages. The insurance companies have a vested interest in compensating you as little as possible. Your employer also has an interest in compensating you as little as possible. Let personal injury attorneys at Herbert & McClelland LLP help you.
Herbert & McClelland LLP works strictly on a contingent fee basis and advances all upfront costs of a case which include investigation, case development, litigation, expert witnesses and court costs. Those expenses, in addition to our fee, are deducted from the ultimate recovery. But if we are not successful in a recovery in your case, we absorb all costs and charge no fee.
If you have been injured on water in the course of your employment or believe you are entitled to benefits under the Jones Act, contact Herbert & McClelland LLP for a free evaluation of your Jones Act claim and to discuss your legal options.
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