“Honesty is the first chapter in the of book wisdom.” - Thomas Jefferson
My Best Advice
When handling your Jones Act Case, you must always tell the truth. Nothing is more important then your credibility. If a judge assumes you are being dishonest, your case will be thrown out and you will be left with nothing. I have seen it happen to many people.
My Second Best Advice
Make sure you read my eye-opening book - Win Your Injury Case: The Ultimate No B.S. Guide to Avoiding Insurance Company Tricks That Ruin Your Case (Even Before You Hire a Lawyer). My book is geared toward Jones Act cases. Don't miss it.
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Don't get punked by the company
When you get hurt at home and see a doctor, you may not think much about who has access to your records or who might talk to your doctor about you—you probably assume that the doctor’s office is following privacy policies and protecting your records. However, when you get hurt while on the sea, you may have to fight to protect your right to privacy while still sharing the records needed to resolve your claim and start your benefits. If you’ve recently been hurt on the water, here are three potential threats to your medical privacy that you should be aware of:
- Company doctors. Doctors that are recommended—or even employed—by your employer may be offering more information about your medical care than you know. If you have concerns about your employer or its insurance company prying into your records, then it is important that use your free choice of doctor. Never treat with the company doctor. In fact, you don't need to even agree to be examined by the company doctor at this point. Don't go there.
- Nurse case managers. Even if you choose your own doctor for your care, your employer or the insurance company may try to send a nurse case manager to attend your visits and talk with the doctor directly. If this happens to you, do not allow the nurse case manager to enter the exam room with you, and speak with an attorney as soon as possible about limiting the case manager’s access. If the insurance company assigns a nurse case manager to your case - you need to lawyer-up. Nine times out of ten the nurse case manager is going to "punk you." Meaning they are going to help tank your case. The nicer the nurse case manager - the more you need to worry. It is the proverbial "wolf in sheep's clothing." Forewarned is forearmed. Meaning, you need to know better.
- “Blanket” medical releases. You may be asked to sign away your entire medical record, but you should know that it probably isn’t necessary. In most cases, you only need to share the records that have to do with the injury you suffered while at work on a vessel. Never sign any releases. Ever. Under any circumstances.
Getting the benefits you deserve under the Jones Act and other maritime laws can be far more difficult than you imagined before you were injured. If you are having trouble getting the help, money, and medical care you deserve after you’ve been hurt on the water, don’t wait any longer to talk it over with the best Jones Act attorney you can find.
Disclaimer: Please understand these discussions and/or examples are not legal advice. All legal situations are different. This testimonial, endorsement and/or discussion does not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter, your particular case/ situation and/or this particular case/ situation. Thanks, Bill Turley