Jones Act Accident Lawsuit in 2024 - Get Compensation

The Jones Act is a federal law that provides compensation to seamen who were injured in the course of their employment and the right to sue their employer for personal injury damages. However, the injured seamen cannot file workers’ compensation claims against their employers; the only way they can receive compensation for their injuries is through the Jones Act accident lawsuit

What is negligence under the Jones Act?

The Jones Act requires a seaman’s employer to:

  • Provide the seaman with a safe place to work.
  • Use ordinary care under the circumstances to maintain and keep the vessel on which the seaman works in a reasonably safe condition.

A maritime employer is liable to the seaman under the Jones act injury lawsuits for the negligence of any of its employees, including the seaman’s captain and co-workers.

The Jones Act is a very employee-friendly law. It places a great burden on a seaman’s employer to ensure that the seaman’s workplace is reasonably safe. An employer can be held liable under the Jones act accident lawsuit for different types of unsafe conditions on a vessel, including:

  • Assault by a coworker.
  • Breakage of equipment.
  • Grease or oil on the deck.
  • Improperly maintained equipment.
  • Improper training of the seaman or the crew in general.
  • Negligence of the seaman’s co-workers.
  • The employer’s failure to provide crew members with the proper equipment for them to do their work.
  • Unsafe work methods.

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Example of a Jones Act negligence

To help you get an idea of how employee-friendly the Jones Act is, here is an instance where there is Jones Act negligence.

Suppose the deckhand is mopping the deck next to a door and does not cordon off the area. If another deckhand comes out of the door and slips on the deck, the injured deckhand will get a fair chance of filing Jones Act accident claims against their employer for negligence because the first deckhand failed to notify other crew members that the deck was going to be soapy and slippery.

In addition, a Jones Act employer can even be liable for hiring and/or failing to fire a violent crew member. Ships can be tough places, but if a crew member has developed a reputation for being violent or threatening to co-workers, the employer has a legal duty to get that person off the vessel. If your employer’s failure caused you injury or damage, you should get legal assistance from Jones Act accident lawyers right away.

Jones Act Accident Lawsuit

Common types of damages that may be recovered in a Jones Act claim

The Jones Act allows certain types of maritime workers to file negligence-based lawsuits against their employers for injuries incurred at work. Maritime workers have this option because they are generally excluded from workers’ compensation insurance coverage. Jones Act claims also allow for the recovery of more types of damages than are available under a workers’ compensation claim.

Here are some of the most common types of damages recovered in Jones Act accident claims by an injured seaman or maritime worker:

In some cases, serious injuries or maritime accidents can affect your life drastically. Damages involving loss of earning capacity allow you to recover compensation for the wages you would have earned in the future had you not been injured!

For instance, if you experience the loss of a limb, you might still be able to work a job, but certain jobs won’t allow you to work. Therefore, your capacity to earn money in the way you used to get lost. Filing a lawsuit will help you receive compensation for it.

These are the wages you would have earned if you had not been injured, both during the time you were injured and during treatment.

For instance, you might need to get emergency medical treatment, meaning you have to leave your job early. As a result, you might have to spend several days recovering before you can return to your job.

Hiring a qualified Jones Act attorney will help you in the complete process of your Jones Act claim. This type of attorney knows the right strategies to win cases involving the Jones Act. Hence, you will be able to get maximum compensation for medical treatments you undergo that are directly related to your injuries, such as emergency department visits, therapies, and surgeries.

For example, if you fractured your leg in a work-time accident, you may need emergency medical treatment to help fix any broken bones. Later, you might need surgery to help ensure the damage is properly fixed. You might have to undergo physical therapy to help you gain back your previous physical abilities.

If your injuries are expected to last long-term, you can file a Jones Act accident lawsuit to get compensation for your future or projected medical expenses.

For example, if your injury would cause a physical disability, paralysis, or permanent damage or would affect you in other ways that require long-term medical care, filing a Jones Act claim helps you recover your losses.

When a maritime injury stops you from working either temporarily or permanently, it becomes important to calculate the money you will spend over time on medical care and pursue these damages on your claim.

Pain and suffering damages can extend to both the physical pain the seaman endured and the mental or emotional anguish they suffered due to the injury. Hiring an experienced Jones Act accident lawyer will help you get maximum compensation for your pain and suffering.

For instance, your injuries may be related to an accident entirely out of the ordinary for your job. You might experience a great deal of physical pain, but the incident itself may have also been traumatizing. Filing the Jones act accident lawsuit will help you receive compensation for your intangible damages.

Statute of limitation in a Jones Act claim

Claimants looking to invoke the Jones Act have three (3) years to sue from when the incident happened. Therefore, the workers need to start investigating and come forward sooner so that the legal process can go along as quickly as possible. 

Filing a claim on time will help you get a fair and full Jones act accident settlement. Although plaintiffs will have three (3) years to bring their lawsuit, many make the mistake of waiting until the last minute to make their legal move. We strongly recommend that you meet and discuss the circumstances of your incident with a qualified lawyer to avoid any issues.

Why choose Ethen Ostroff Law?

You might think you can handle the entire process of filing a Jones Act accident lawsuit. However, hiring a skilled and experienced Jones Act accident attorney in Philadelphia is still a wiser and more promising move.

Ethen Ostroff Law possesses extensive years of experience handling these types of cases. Together with our network of trusted counsels, we will help you to:

  • Collect evidence.
  • Develop a strategy for your case.
  • Evaluate your damages and their value.
  • File your Jones Act injury lawsuits on time.
  • Communicate with the other parties on your behalf.
  • Negotiate for a fair settlement.
  • Defend your case at trial, if necessary.

Call us at 610-510-8883 for a free evaluation of your case. We are committed to helping our hardworking seamen win their cases and get fair compensation for their injuries.

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