The Houston law office of Attorney Brian White & Associates, P.C. can assist you in determining if your injury is covered under the Longshore & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act or under the Jones Act. If you work on a vessel in navigable waters but are not classified as a “seamen,” you may be covered under the Longshore & Harbors Act. This Act covers workers who work on navigable waters in the U.S., or in adjoining areas used in loading, unloading, repairing, and building a vessel. These workers are not considered Jones Act “seamen.”
Unlike the Jones Act, the Longshore & Harbor Act is regulated by the U.S. Labor Department and has a set schedule of benefits. If you are injured and cannot return to work, you are eligible to receive up to 66 2/3 of your average weekly pay. It’s up to the employee to file a claim and the employer must dispute the claim within 14 days or begin payment. An injured worker is allowed under the act to choose his own doctor. An employer may refer an employee to a company-approved doctor, but he is under no obligation to see that physician.
Who Is Eligible?
The Longshore & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act is designed to bridge the gap between the Jones Act, which covers all seamen, and workers covered under state workers compensation, which specifically prohibits covering anyone employed on navigable waters. Office staff performing clerical functions onshore are typically covered under state workers’ compensation.
What Are the Benefits?
Under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act employees have the right to receive benefits regardless of fault for the worker’s injuries or illness. Injured or ill workers who qualify for coverage are entitled to medical and disability benefit payments and rehabilitation services. Wrongful death benefits are available to survivors of maritime workers who die from work-related injuries or illnesses.
Why Do I need an Attorney?
If you or a loved one suffered an injury or illness during the course of employment on or near a vessel or other floating structure and believe you may have a claim under either the Jones Act, the Longshore and Harbors’ Workers’ Compensation Act, or another area of maritime law, contact Attorney Brian White & Associates, P.C.
We offer a no-obligation consultation. We only charge when we are successful in obtaining compensation for your injury or illness. We always represent your rights to maximize your recovery of benefits under the Longshore and Harbors’ Workers’ Compensation Act. In order to preserve your right to damages, your claim must be filed before the expiration date. Contact the Maritime law attorneys of Brian White & Associates to secure your rights.