Jones Act Compensation Explained
Maritime work is not without risks. Heavy machinery, slippery decks, and treacherous weather and water conditions can all contribute to a dangerous work environment if left unchecked. Due to these exceptionally dangerous conditions, maritime workers are granted a unique layer of protection under the Jones Act—a federal statute that provides the laws and regulations for U.S. waters and ports and holds employers accountable for offshore negligence.
What Can I Receive With My Jones Act Claim?
If it can be proven that negligence was the cause of a maritime work injury, employees may receive compensation under the Jones Act. Employees who qualify for Jones Act protection may typically seek damages for:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Past and future lost wages
- Past and future medical expenses
The total compensation amount that an injured worker receives will vary from case to case and can be affected by a variety of factors, including:
- The severity of the injuries
- The duration of the effects
- The amount that the injury alters a worker’s everyday life
- The severity of the negligence
How Do I Know If I Qualify?
If there was any negligence on part of the vessel owner, captain or crewmembers, you may have a Jones Act claim. An unseaworthy vessel could also entitle you to compensation.
The rule of thumb is that a worker must contribute to a vessel’s overall purpose at least 30 percent of the time in order to qualify for protection under the Jones Act. This allows a wide variety of employees to seek compensation in the event that an injury due to negligence occurs. Injured seamen who qualify under the Jones Act serve a variety of roles on a maritime vessel. These workers include:
How Do I Receive Compensation for My Injuries?
In the event that you have been injured while working at sea and believe that you have a Jones Act claim, contact an attorney to begin evaluating your case. Record any details that may contribute to the argument that negligence was involved in the accident.
Injured seamen deserve to be represented by an attorney who understands the complexity of Jones Act legal disputes. Contact Steve Lee today to receive insight on your maritime injury case.