Yes, if the Commercial Fisherman Works Exclusively for One Vessel
Not Your Average Day at the Office
Fishing is a grueling business, and fishermen are at particular risk of debilitating injuries and death every single day. In order to protect for-profit fishing operations, the federal maritime law provides injury coverage to commercial fishermen who are hurt while working. In some cases, workers may be covered by the additional protections of the Jones Act, which provides lost wages and medical payments while a fisherman is unable to work.
Jones Act Compensation and Benefits for Commercial Fisherman
A commercial fisherman who works exclusively for one vessel can be considered a seaman under the provisions of the Jones Act. This act protects crew members who suffer work injuries, including falling through hatches, amputation of fingers and limbs, crushing injuries, falling overboard, or even disability due to daily strain of the back, neck, and shoulders.
Commercial fishermen are entitled to the following Jones Act injury payments:
- Maintenance. If you are unable to work due to an injury, your employer must pay you a daily living allowance called “maintenance.” These are paid to any seaman who sustained an injury in the course of employment and should be paid until the injury has stabilized.
- Cure. Your employer must also pay all reasonable medical costs that are incurred due to work injury or illness (known as “cure”). This can include emergency treatment, rehabilitation, doctors’ visits, surgeries, prescriptions, and transportation to any related medical appointments.
- Unseaworthiness claims. Unlike other workers’ compensation programs, injured fisherman can still sue an employer for causing injury under the Jones Act. If the ship’s crew or captain was negligent or the ship owner did not make sure the vessel was seaworthy, a seaman may sue for additional compensation.
Depending on the specifics of your case, your damages may include the costs of your lost wages, a loss of future earning capacity, permanent disability compensation, and an award for unnecessary pain and suffering. If you think your employer contributed to your injury, please feel free to use our website to learn more about your Jones Act negligence claim.
“When I seek out professional advice, I don’t want B.S., I want it straight up. I figure you do also.” - Jones Act Attorney Bill Turley
My Best Advice
If you are an injured seaman, you have rights to be protected under the Longshore Jones Act. The first thing after you are injured is that you should always tell the truth. Nothing is more important than your credibility with the judge and your lawyer. No matter what type of injury or how you were injured, you should never sugarcoat or exaggerate anything.
My Second Best Advice
The next best thing you can do before you go to court is research as much information as you can about your Jones Act Case. I have handled these types of cases since the 1980's. I have gained valuable and helpful knowledge these cases. Order my Free 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]. It is full of useful and helpful information on how to handle your Jones Act Case from beginning to end.
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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