People are hurt every year because of accidents that happen offshore. Workers can be injured on cruise ships, commercial boats, fishing charters, or other types of ships.
If you are hurt and suffering because of the injuries you suffered while working on a vessel, you may be able to hold your employer responsible for your injuries.
A Bohemia offshore injuries lawyer from Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. may be able to represent you. Our lawyers understand the Jones Act and other laws related to employment and injuries that occur over open water. They may be able to investigate your case, prove your employer’s liability, and pursue compensation on your behalf while you focus on your recovery.
For a free, no-risk review of your case with a member of our team, call Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. today at (631) 600-0000. We may be able to represent you on a contingency-fee basis with no advanced payment required.
Types of Injuries That Can Occur on Commercial Boats and Vessels
There are many injuries that someone can sustain as a result of working on or around the water, such as:
- Head injuries from slipping and falling on the deck
- Broken bones
- Lacerations and scarring
- Crushed limbs from becoming tangled in lines
- Spinal cord injuries as a result of falling from heights
- Drownings of near-drownings
- Electrical shocks
- Smoke inhalation
- Loss of limbs
- Gas poisoning
- Injuries from rough seas
- And more
Understanding the Jones Act
The Jones Act is a federal law that was created in 1920 to regulate foreign shipping and protect crew members from being exploited in their work. It gives them the right to sue their employer for any injuries they suffer while working on a vessel if the injuries were caused by negligence. The Jones Act sets the standard for crew training and qualifications and for reasonable maintenance.
Under the Jones Act, an employer is required to provide a safe working environment. If they are negligent in these duties and create a situation where a sailor is harmed on ship, they may be liable for the sailor’s damages in a lawsuit.
Qualifying for the Jones Act
Not everyone who works on the water meets the qualifications for the Jones Act. According to the Jones Act, it is a “seaman” who may elect to bring a civil action against their employer.
The courts have interpreted the term to mean someone who performs work related to a specific fleet or vessel, and that they are assigned to that vessel for the entirety of their work. One federal court determined that the employee must spend at least 30% or more of their time on the vessel to qualify.
The 30% guideline is a general rule but is not determinative of whether you qualify to hold your employer liable for your injuries under the Jones Act.
If you were injured offshore, a Bohemia offshore injuries lawyer from Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. may be able to help you sue your employer for damages under the Jones Act.
For a free, no-obligation consultation on your case with a member of our team, call Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. today at (631) 600-0000.
Recoverable Damages After an Offshore Injury
There are many types of damages you may be able to recover as a result of your injuries. Ultimately, the types of damages you may recover are usually dependent on the severity of your injuries and the extent of your financial losses. Some common types of damages you may be able to recover include:
- Hospital stays
- Surgical procedures
- Disfigurement or dismemberment
- Doctors examinations
- Wheelchairs and other assistive devices
- Lost wages
- Future wages if your earning potential is lost or diminished
- Pain and suffering
If your loved one died because of injuries they sustained on a vessel as a result of their employer’s negligence, your family has the right to pursue damages in a wrongful death lawsuit. Some possible recoverable damages for this type of lawsuit include:
- Wages and benefits previously provided by the deceased
- Funeral and burial costs
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of support and protection
- And more
Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. is Here for You
Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. understands how overwhelming it can be to think about pursuing legal action if you are still recovering from your injuries. However, a Bohemia offshore injuries lawyer from our firm who is familiar with federal laws like the Jones Act may be able to help you pursue compensation while you focus on healing from your injuries.
Even if you do not qualify for the Jones Act, there are other federal laws, like 33 U.S. Code Chapter 18—also known as the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act—that may provide compensation for injuries that occurred while working.
A lawyer from our firm can explore the details of your case and determine which federal law is applicable when we represent you. We can also gather evidence like eyewitness statements and medical reports to prove that your employer behaved negligently.
Likewise, we can review your medical reports, statements from your doctors, and medical bills to determine the total value of your claim.
If your employer’s insurance company is not willing to make you a fair settlement offer, we can take your case to trial.
Call Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. Today
Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. offers a free, no-obligation consultation to injured sailors in Bohemia. To discuss your case and your legal options with a member of our team, call us today at (631) 600-0000.
A Bohemia offshore injuries lawyer from our firm may be able to handle your case on a contingency-fee basis. In this arrangement, we do not collect attorney’s fees unless and until you recover compensation in a settlement offer of court awards.