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Identifying the Best Suited Louisiana Maritime Attorneys For Your Dispute

Feb 28th 2013 at 8:56 PM

All sorts of maritime jobs involve dangers that could result in critical injury or even death. Unfortunately there are all manner of possible hazards lurking while working for the offshore oil and gas service market, stevedoring companies, barge fleets, marine or anchor salvage businesses, or commercial fishing fleets among many other maritime jobs. Heedless crewmembers, ship operators cutting corners on safety measures, imprudent captains, collisions between vessels, loss of footing on a slick deck, lack of adequate railing, malfunctioning equipment, shifting cargo, fires and explosions from well blowouts, and severe weather conditions are just some of the myriad situations that can result in a significant injury or death.

The unique branch of law, which handles maritime accident related litigation, is known as Maritime Law or Admiralty Law. Since Maritime Law can be confusing and confusing for those who are not well versed in the specificity of this branch of law, it is important to select an experienced Louisiana maritime attorney, instead of just hiring a personal injury lawyer. Qualified Louisiana maritime attorneys will evaluate your case to see if you qualify as an injured seaman for maintenance and cure, and /or settlement from the Jones Act and the doctrine of a vessel’s “un-seaworthiness.”

Who can Recieve Compensation?

Spending at the very least 30% of your work time on a vessel under navigation or other floating or movable structure along the Louisiana inland waterways or in the Gulf of Mexico will almost certainly entitled you to restitution under Louisiana and federal maritime and admiralty laws, if you suffer a serious injury while on the job. In addition, the Jones Act also protects the loved one or family of a maritime worker who is killed while working on a vessel due to carelessness, including the unseaworthiness of the vessel. Land based maritime laborers are not eligible for the protections offered by the Jones Act. On the other hand, they may be eligible for compensation under The Longshore and Harbor Worker's Compensation Act. All those employed in maritime jobs, including longshore workers or other persons in longshore operations, and any harbor workers, including ship repairers, builders, and breakers are covered under the Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act. The Act does not include those maritime workers, who are covered under the Jones Act. The term "injury" in both the Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act and the Jones Act includes occupational sickness arising out of employment.

Be Aware of Your Rights?

The Merchant Marine Act of 1920, now often known as the Jones Act governs the liability of vessel operators and marine employers for their employee’s work-related injuries. Recovering damages involves proving negligence or fault on the part of the vessel’s owners, operators, officers, and/or fellow workers or show defect, also termed “unseaworthiness,” with the vessel, making it not only un fit for its developed use, but also an unsafe place to operate and live.

If you are an offshore maritime worker and you have unfortunately been seriously injured, be sure to fill out the accident report or incident paperwork as soon as possible. With critical injuries it is crucial to have a competent Louisiana maritime attorney look over any paperwork your employer gives you to sign. After a serious incident, it is recommended not to give a recorded statement to anyone without first seeking legal advice. This can at times be challenging. Ultimately, seek out your own doctor to understand the severity of your injuries. Quite a few companies may try to direct you towards their doctors who may not have your best interests in mind when they give a diagnosis.

When choosing a Lawyer look for law firms that have not only knowledgeable Louisiana maritime attorneys to prepare and present your case, but also a team of folks who can immediately investigate your accident, photograph and preserve the evidence, question witnesses, and safeguard all of your lawful rights.

One of the most important decisions you’ll ever make is selecting the right Louisiana maritime attorneys to defend your case. Uncover competent New Orleans Maritime Attorneys web sites by doing an effortless search on the Net. One highly respected firm you can count on to represent your maritime law case is the law office of Gordon, Elias && Seely, L.L.P., with their specialized Maritime Law and Jones Act lawyers.

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