Following an offshore injury, it is not uncommon for insurance companies to push for a quick settlement. Unfortunately, insurance companies are not always primarily concerned with the victim. Rather, they are worried about their bottom line and how to not lose money. Due to this, they can be reluctant to give workers the compensation they need. They may call the victim soon after the accident, offering a settlement that is well below the amount they could receive. If this is your case, you should speak with an offshore accident lawyer so that you can get a realistic estimate of what compensation you should receive.
General maritime law protects seamen injured while at work. "Seaman" refers to more than just engineers and deckhands. It includes cooks, housekeepers, waitresses, maids, and any other employee who is necessary to the operation of the ship. It is the responsibility of the employer to provide employees with a safe work environment, which means keeping the ship seaworthy, keeping the equipment up to date, and providing adequate training.
The Jones Act was created in 1920 as a way to file a lawsuit against negligent employers or ship owners. By taking this route, victims could receive more compensation than they would have if they had settled for the first offer from the insurance company. There may be more to the situation than the initial injury. Under the Jones Act, workers can claim for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, medical care, emotional trauma, and more. The Longshore and Harbor Workers' Comp Act is another law protecting not just seaman, but all maritime workers. Under this act, victims can receive a percentage of their weekly average income as well as claim medical expenses.
Arnold & Itkin represented nearly a third of the crewmembers injured in the Deepwater Horizon explosion.
Because maritime law is so complex and so complicated, it is crucial that you work with an attorney who has an in-depth understanding of how it works and who has proven themselves in similar cases before.