What's the Process for Filing a Jones Act Claim?
The Jones Act is one of the most important laws for offshore workers. It provides them with the ability to pursue compensation after sustaining injuries caused by an employer’s negligence. One of the most important aspects of a Jones Act claim is understanding how one works. Doing so will help you make the right decisions to strengthen your claim and help you obtain the compensation that you need.
The first step to a successful Jones Act claim is calling an offshore injury lawyer. Call Arnold & Itkin LLP for a free consultation right now at (888) 346-5024.
Report Your Injuries & Document the Incident
After sustaining an injury while working, the first thing someone should do is report the incident to their supervisor, employer, or the vessel’s captain. Federal law requires injured workers to report an incident within seven days, so it’s best to do so as soon as possible. Follow up on your injury report and make sure that the captain enters it into the vessel’s log. Even if your injury isn’t life-threatening, don’t try and finish your shift before reporting it. Consult with an attorney before filling out a company accident report. Proving negligence is crucial for a Jones Act claim, and some workers might unintentionally release a company from liability if they fill out an accident form incorrectly or don’t understand what they are doing.
Receiving medical assistance is crucial to making a successful Jones Act claim. Seeing a medical professional creates a record of your injuries that is important for building a strong Jones Act claim. If seeing a medical professional that’s related to your company, be careful about signing any documents that might release your company from liability. If you’re having trouble receiving the medical care that you need, contact a Jones Act attorney as soon as possible.
The Claims Process & Hiring an Attorney
Once you report your injuries, your employer should fill out an accident report and send it to their insurer. Remember, if your employer or insurer contacts you about the claim don’t say anything that could shift responsibility for your accident to other parties. Once your employer submits a report to its insurer, you’ll have the decision to accept a settlement for file suit to pursue more. Remember, if you accept a settlement, you’ll be unable to pursue your employer for additional damages. As mentioned above, it’s always best to speak with an attorney before accepting or denying a claim.
Speaking with a member of the Arnold & Itkin LLP about your Jones Act claim is free of charge. Contact us right now at (888) 346-5024 to find out your options.