Many injured workers do not understand the full extent of their rights after a maritime accident. These rights are protected under federal laws like the Jones Act and Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA). For example, you have a right to see your own physician. Additionally, you have a right to seek compensation for medical bills and contractual wages. As a Jones Act seaman, you also have a right to file a claim for damages if your employer’s negligence caused your injury. You have a right to hire an experienced attorney who can protect you and fight for the compensation you may deserve.
The Texas law firm of Stevenson & Murray offers practical legal advice, attentive personal service and dedicated representation. We help injured maritime workers seeking to exert their legal rights after an accident on the job. Contact our offices in Houston today for a free consultation with a highly knowledgeable maritime accident and injury trial attorney. All client consultations are strictly confidential.
Most maritime workers have heard the phrase and know that it refers to compensation for a maritime injury. However, few understand the precise meaning of maintenance and cure. Maintenance is essentially the daily cost of living payment an employer makes to an injured crewman who is unable to return to duty. Cure refers to the vessel owner’s legal obligation to pay all of an injured or ill seaman’s reasonable and necessary medical expenses.
An experienced Houston maritime attorney is the ideal asset to have on your side when you must pursue maintenance and cure in response to a maritime work injury. Calculating maintenance can be more challenging than you may initially expect, and your attorney will ensure that the party responsible for your injury pays an appropriate amount to cover your living expenses as you recover from your injury.
Since a ship’s captain is expected to cover a seaman’s room and board while working on their vessel, this responsibility translates to covering an injured seaman’s living expenses as they recuperate from their injury. These living expenses include the cost of rent, or the worker’s mortgage payment, utilities, food, and any and all other living expenses they cannot manage due to their inability to work.
When it comes to cure, an experienced attorney will help their client calculate the full scope of the medical treatment and ongoing rehabilitation they are likely to require to reach maximum medical improvement from their injuries. Your legal team can work with your medical providers to ascertain the level of improvement you should see from your injuries. Some injured workers make full recoveries and are able to return to work relatively soon after their injuries, while others are left permanently impaired by the maritime work injuries they suffered.
A standard workers’ compensation claim for a covered worker injured on land generally includes full coverage of their medical expenses and a portion of their lost income, usually about two-thirds of their average weekly wage. In addition, some injured workers can pursue further legal recourse in response to their work injuries on land, but when workers’ compensation is their only option for recovery, the compensation they obtain can feel somewhat limited.
Maintenance and cure available through the Jones Act and other maritime laws generally offers more expansive recovery. However, these cases entail injured workers confronting their employers, and most maritime employers are large companies with vast legal resources.
Warning: Some companies will pay maintenance and cure until your rights to sue them have lapsed, then dump you. An experienced attorney can help protect your rights and your recovery against this underhanded tactic. In addition, both maritime employers and insurance companies are far less likely to attempt any bad faith handling of a work injury claim when they know experienced legal counsel represents the injured worker.
Claims for maintenance and cure can involve complex legal issues. They may require standing up against a major multinational corporation with a staff of attorneys tasked with fighting to limit payments to injured maritime workers. Therefore, you need an experienced legal team on your side to protect your rights and fight for your recovery.
When you choose Stevenson & Murray to handle your maritime work injury case, we will immediately set to work determining which maritime laws apply to your claim. We’ll help you meet all the legal prerequisites of your claim, so there is no administrative red tape preventing you from securing the compensation you deserve. When it comes to claims for maintenance and cure, our firm is always committed to helping our client maximize their recovery as much as the law allows.
The attorneys at Stevenson & Murray have years of professional experience handling a wide range of work injury claims for maritime workers based in the Houston area. Whether your claim falls under the purview of the Jones Act, the LHWCA, or any other piece of maritime legislation, we can help. Our firm has the professional resources and experience required to handle the toughest cases. We can also confront large employers and insurance companies on behalf of our clients, and we know the tactics these organizations often attempt to use to avoid responsibility for their injured workers’ claims.
Maritime law is a unique area of law that applies to those who work offshore, outside of the jurisdiction of their home state. The attorneys at Stevenson & Murray specialize in worker injury cases that fall under the purview of maritime law, which is very different from work injury claims among workers on land, who are typically covered by state law and employer workers’ compensation insurance. Your Houston maritime attorney can assist you in understanding the maritime injury laws that apply to your case and leverage the maritime laws that can empower your recovery efforts.
It’s natural to worry about the potential cost of legal fees if you are already facing expensive medical bills and other economic losses from a maritime work injury. However, the attorneys at Stevenson & Murray accept many work injury cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning our client only pays a legal fee after we have won their case, and they owe nothing if our firm is unable to secure compensation on their behalf for any reason.
The scope of the maintenance and cure you could potentially obtain with the help of an experienced maritime injury attorney hinges on the scope and severity of the injuries you suffered. Your attorney can help you prove the full extent of the medical care you will require to reach maximum medical improvement from your injury, and they will also be instrumental in proving the financial impact of your inability to work.
It is possible for an injury that occurs while working on land to qualify for maintenance and cure under relevant maritime laws, but this is determined by calculating the time the injured worker typically spends working on land vs. working at sea. Most workers who suffer injuries on land are covered by employer workers’ compensation insurance and state law. When these do not apply, and the worker spends a significant amount of time working offshore, they are likely to qualify for legal recourse under maritime laws.
If you or a loved one suffered injuries while working in any maritime operation, it is always best to have experienced legal counsel advise you as you navigate the complex legal proceedings your recovery efforts are likely to entail. The right Houston maritime injury attorney is an invaluable asset when you must confront large corporations, their in-house legal teams, and insurance companies that have no incentive to pay you. When you choose Stevenson & Murray to represent your claim, you have a dedicated legal advocate readily available to answer your questions and address your concerns through all stages of your case.
It is important to discuss your case with an attorney who has real experience, industry knowledge and a proven commitment to helping injured maritime workers recover. Call the Houston offices of Stevenson & Murray today at (713) 622-3223 to schedule a free and completely confidential consultation. It is critical to contact an attorney as soon as possible. You may also contact us by email now for more information or to schedule an appointment.
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