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An Injured Oil Rig Worker’s Guide to OCSLA Benefits

Offshore Oil Rig Workers

“Honesty is more than not lying. It is truth telling, truth speaking, truth living and truth loving.” -James E. Faust

If you are an injured seaman, you have rights to be protected. 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. 

The best thing you can do before you go to court is research as much information as you can about your Jones Act Case. 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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When you are injured on an offshore oil rig, you must first determine if you qualify for or Outer Continental Shelf Land Act (OCSLA) benefits. The continental shelf refers to the underwater area between the land and the deep ocean. This area is rich in oil, natural gas, and other minerals. Those who work to explore, develop, or refine these resources are covered under the OCSLA. This includes most offshore oil rig workers.

Our article, “Are You Covered by the OCSLA” will help you determine if you are an OCSLA worker. If you are an OCSLA worker, you will need to take the following steps to access and protect your benefits:

Notify Your Employer

Your first step after an injury is to notify your employer. You will need to ask your employer for two forms:

  • LS-201: Notice of Employees' Injury or Death
  • LS-1: Request for Examination and/or Treatment

Form LS-201 gives your employer written notice of your injury. It must be filled out and returned to your employer within 30 days of the injury. If you don’t fill out the form within 30 days, you could lose your benefits.

Form LS-1 authorizes medical treatment from the doctor of your choice. If it is an emergency, you can see a doctor without the form. But, you should fill out the form as soon as you are able to. If you don’t fill out the form, your medical bills will not be covered.

Get Medical Treatment

Don’t wait to get medical treatment. Call your doctor and make an appointment as soon as possible after filling out Form LS-1. If it is an emergency, get medical attention right away. You can fill out form LS-1 after you receive treatment.

File a Written Claim for Compensation (Form LS-203)

If your injury leaves you unable to work for a significant period of time, you may request OCSLA disability compensation. In order to request these benefits, you must fill out Form LS-203: Employee's Claim for Compensation.  The form must be completed within one year after the date of injury or your last paycheck, whichever is later. Give the form and a copy of your medical report to your employer. If you are eligible for benefits, compensation will begin within 14 days of submitting the form.

Protect Yourself!

Many people think that filing a form with their employer is enough. You should also mail a copy of each form to the Office of Workers' Compensation Programs. The address is:


Remember to keep copies of all your forms.

If you aren’t approved for benefits, you will receive a Notice of Controversion or Form LS-207. You have the right to appeal this decision. To learn more about your right to appeal, please contact The Turley Law Firm at (619) 234-2833 or 866-705-4617.

William Turley
“When I seek out professional advice, I don’t want B.S., I want it straight up. I figure you do also.”

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