Maritime law, also referred to as admiralty law, precedes the constitution. Maritime law relates to navigation and commerce on seas and other passable waters and that the admiralty courts administer it. Maritime law generally encompasses both local U.S. laws and international laws. These laws outline the rules that govern torts, contracts, injuries, and any offense that occurs near navigable water or in navigable water.
Maritime attorneys Specialize in boating accidents in commercial and recreational marine activities and maritime injuries. Maritime lawyers protect seamen who are injured on the job and protect victims of recreational boating accident injuries.
The types of activities that maritime attorneys may conduct include;
- Drafting legal documents
- Trying cases in court
- Negotiating agreements
- They also handle complaints about illnesses or injuries caused by marine vessels or watercraft and industries disposing harmful waste into the sea.
Maritime law can sometimes be complex, and lawyers should be grounded in federal, international, and state laws. Moreover, an attorney needs to know the specifics regarding marine pollution, marine insurance, and employee compensation, to name a few.
Compensation Claims For a Maritime Injury
A maritime injury claim is similar to a workers’ compensation claim; the only difference is that a marine injury settlement tends to be larger by comparison because working on sea vessels is riskier than working in many other areas. If you got maritime injury on the line of duty and qualified as a seaman, you can be paid for the following;
- Healthcare costs
- Loss of future and present income
- Loss of both your mental and physical faculties
- Any treatments or rehabilitation
- Mental distress
- Other expenses as they relate to your injury.
Who is Covered Under the Jones Act?
The Jones Act protects seamen who get injured on the job. To qualify as a seaman, a worker must be aboard a navigating vessel at least thirty percent of the time. An employee who spends seventy percent of his time working on land and spends thirty percent of his time working on a vessel is still covered under the Jones Act.
Common Causes of Maritime Injury
Although maritime law covers a wide array of categories, some l injuries are more common than others. The majority of accidents that occur on vessels are slip and fall injuries. Considering that all sea vessels will have wet surfaces, employers should train employees in minimizing slip and fall accidents. Other types of damages occur from;
- Working near machines that can cause harm.
- Exposure to hazardous chemicals and toxic respiratory agents
- Lifting heavy objects
- Working in confined spaces
- Using repeated movements while working,
An individual who suffers an injury while working offshore or aboard a vessel may be able to file a workers’ compensation or negligence claim.
Workers’ Compensation Claims: An injured individual can file a workers’ compensation claim under state or federal law to receive benefits, including medical treatment.
Negligence Claims: On the other hand, the victim can press charges against an employer, a boating insurance company, or a third party. To triumph, the aggrieved person has to show that the negligence of another person occasioned their injuries. In most states, to show negligence, the aggrieved person must prove that:
- The accused act of negligence caused the accident
- The charged owed the aggrieved duty of care
- The plaintiff got Injured as a result
- The accused breached the duty of care
Evidence that may help prove negligence includes:
- Photographs of the injury or property damage, videos, or pictures of the scene of the accident.
- Police reports.
- Eyewitness statements or testimony.
Seeking an experienced maritime attorney’s services can help plaintiffs understand their rights under federal, state, and international waters laws and collect the documents required to file a claim.