For many Louisiana families, working in the maritime industry or offshore is a way of life and has been for generations. But if you’re injured on the job and workers’ compensation benefits don’t cover your claim, you may be wondering how you’ll support yourself and your family, not to mention how you’ll pay your medical bills.

The maritime accident lawyers at Dudley DeBosier have years of experience helping injured workers like you. We know the federal laws that are designed to protect workers who sustain offshore injuries, and we’re ready to go the extra mile for you. If you’ve been in a maritime accident and are unsure about your next steps, we want to help. Call us anytime, 24/7 at (866) 897-8495 or complete our free initial consultation form now.

Maritime and Offshore Accident Claims We Handle

Injuries and deaths caused by negligence which happened in open water can be extremely costly, both emotionally and financially. Offshore accidents often prove fatal, occurring miles away from appropriate emergency personnel and resources. If you or a loved one has been injured through a maritime accident, the experienced attorneys at Dudley DeBosier are here for you.

Depending on how or where you were injured, different federal laws may apply to your claim. Under laws like the Jones Act, the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, and the Federal Employers Liability Act, there may be financial support and legal options available to you.

No matter what kind of injury you have from a maritime accident, we want to help. Our Louisiana maritime accident lawyers represent a variety of individuals who have been injured in on-the-job accidents, including:

  • Cargo ship hands
  • Construction barge workers
  • Deckhands
  • Drill ship workers
  • Harbor workers
  • Longshoremen
  • Oil rig workers
  • Seamen
  • Supply vessel workers
  • Tanker workers
  • Towboats and tugboat workers
  • And many others who are injured on the Gulf of Mexico and Mississippi River.

Our legal team fights for what is right, and it’s our goal to not only provide you with excellent legal representation, but also to get you the compensation you need to recover to the best of your ability.

We help people who have been injured in Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Houma, Denham Springs, or New Orleans maritime accidents. Contact our team today for a free consultation.

Who Can File a Claim for Maritime Injuries?

Regardless of occupation, workers in the United States are entitled to a safe place to work. This includes sailors and seamen, even with the dangerous conditions surrounding maritime employment. If you suffered injuries while working offshore or on a boat, it may be possible to secure recovery or compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and disability.

Any seaman injured or harmed in the process of regular work is eligible to file a claim, as long as the maritime vessel in question was navigating or away from the dock at the time of the incident. Claims can be filed against employers, vessel owners, and other parties whose negligence caused serious harm or injury, providing necessary legal recourse when trouble comes to call.

Dudley DeBosier has maritime accident lawyers conveniently located throughout Louisiana in Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Shreveport, and Lafayette who help offshore injury victims throughout Louisiana.

Workers’ Compensation Claims

An injured individual from an offshore accident can file a workers’ compensation claim under state or federal law to receive benefits, including medical treatment.

Negligence Claims

Alternatively, the victim can file a claim against an employer, third party, or boating insurance company. To win the claim, the plaintiff will have to prove that another person’s or party’s negligent act led to his or her injuries. Evidence that may be helpful in proving negligence include:

  • Photographs of the injury or property damage
  • Photographs of the scene of the accident
  • Eyewitness statements or testimony
  • Police reports

Our experienced maritime accident attorneys are here to help individuals understand their rights under federal, Louisiana, and international waters laws, and collect the documentation needed to file a successful claim.

What is the Jones Act and How Can It Help Me With a Personal Injury or Workers’ Compensation Claim?

While employment laws have been in place for decades, the Jones Act redefined maritime law to protect the safety of employees around the country. Prior to the Jones Act, there was very little recourse for those injured at sea, leading to countless injuries and wrongful deaths with no hope for justice.

Also known as the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, this law was passed to allow qualified sailors to receive compensation in exchange for injury. Under the Jones Act, seafaring employees who spend at least 30% of their time on the water are permitted to file claims in cases of injury and negligence. There is a three-year statute of limitations that applies; however, any claims not filed within three years of injury will not be considered under the Jones Act. For claims involving the United States government, the statute of limitations may be lowered to two years.

What is Unseaworthiness?

As the name implies, unseaworthiness occurs when a vessel is not deemed to be adequately prepared for use on the water. A vessel’s owner has an absolute obligation to provide a seaworthy vessel that meets all structural and safety requirements, is reasonably fit for its intended purpose, and has the right safety and security gear on board. When these criteria aren’t met, a vessel is not seaworthy and can pose serious threats to workers on board. Owners with unseaworthy vessels who continue to operate as normal can be held liable for boat injuries and offshore accidents that occur as a result of negligent practices.

Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act

A federal workers’ compensation program that provides benefits and care to qualified longshoremen and harbor workers injured while on the job, the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, or LHWCA, can provide coverage for medical care, disability, and funeral expenses. LHWCA provides protection for employees in many different industries related to maritime endeavors, including those who work on docks and in harbors, those who build, assemble, load, and unload watercraft, and general maritime construction professionals.

Benefits for qualifying workers are generous, offering the following forms of assistance:

  • Medical care, treatment, and supplies at the physician of one’s choice
  • Disability compensation for qualifying disabilities
  • Death benefits for funeral expenses up to $3,000 and, for spouses, 50% of the employee’s weekly wages until death or remarriage. Sole surviving children without siblings will receive 50% of weekly wages. Sole surviving children with siblings will receive 66.66% of weekly wages split evenly.

When you’re facing injury or disability related to a maritime accident, the right attorney is your biggest asset.

Lawyers qualified in issues relating to boat accidents can guide you every step of the way, ensuring you’re getting the help you need to secure the best possible outcome. With the ability to file your claim properly and fight for the right settlement for you, maritime accident attorneys can provide you with the support you need when you need help most.

Demand Dudley DeBosier

You already have enough to deal with after a maritime injury. At Dudley DeBosier, it’s our goal to make the legal process as stress-free as possible so you can focus on what matters most—your health and your family. After a maritime injury in Louisiana, don’t hire just any injury attorney. Our legal team knows what you’re going through, and we’re ready to go the extra mile to help you get the compensation you deserve.

Whether you were injured on a dock, in the harbor, or in international waters, we want to hear your story. Call us anytime at (866) 897-8495 or fill out the free initial consultation form below.