Every so often, there is the possibility that those in the maritime industry will suffer injuries in the course of their work. In such cases, statues have been developed to protect the welfare of such workers. All the federal maritime laws that surround such situations are known as Jones Act. Those who may be entitled to compensation and benefits for sustaining on-the-job injuries include seamen, officers, oil workers, technicians or other workers injured near water. However, the process of claims and settlements under Jones Act are complicated.
Things you need to know about Jones Act settlements and claims
Due to the complicated nature of the said settlements and claims, it is always advisable to seek the guidance of a Jones Act attorney. The attorney will offer professional advice and guide you through the whole process.
Maintenance and cure
Benefits relating to maintenance and cure go hand in hand. The employer of the injured worker is usually required to pay for these benefits. Maintenance refers to the compensation received to cater for living expenses that the worker would have received if they were on duty. Cure covers medical expense until such a point that the condition of the injured person cannot improve further. When the point of maximum medical care is reached, both benefits cease.
Different compensation claims
It is important to understand Jones Act and the situations to which it applies. If you suffer injuries in the maritime industry and file a case under the regular workers’ compensation claim, your case may end up being jeopardized. Moreover, settlements under Jones Act are usually higher in cases where the injury was as a result of negligence or an unseaworthy vessel.
Deadline for filing claims
One of the most important things to know about these claims is that there is a time limit for filing the claims. As such, you must be sure to contact an attorney immediately you suffer work-related injuries in the maritime industry. If you do not file a claim within three years of sustaining the injury, there are chances that you will be out of luck and will not be compensated.
Benefits of having legal counsel
You can enjoy many benefits by seeking the help of a maritime attorney. The maritime attorney will help in the collection of evidence to be used in proving negligence, conducting negotiations with the relevant insurers and seeing to it that you receive maintenance and cure as well as all other benefits you qualify for.
Whenever possible, you should contact an experienced Jones Act attorney immediately after sustaining injuries. This will go a long way in helping you file for the claims before the given time frame elapses. At the same time, it will be accompanied by a sense of peace of mind as you go through the process.