Maritime accidents often result in severe injuries and lifelong physical limitations. When an accident occurs on the river and someone’s negligence is to blame, injured maritime workers have possible recourse for compensation for their damages.
A Memphis maritime injury lawyer can help determine whether you could be entitled to financial recovery for your losses from an accident. Seasoned maritime attorney Elissa M. Coombs of the Law Office of David E. Gordon has more than 18 years of experience specializing in boating, barge, and maritime accident cases and can safeguard your legal interests and fight hard to see that you get all compensation owed to you. Our personal injury attorneys take these kinds of cases on a contingency basis, which means we do not get paid unless you get paid, so you risk nothing for a free case evaluation. En Español.
Injuries and deaths on and around the water involve some of the most complicated federal laws in our entire legal system. Many maritime incidents involve river-based crew members who were hurt on the job, but there are also thousands of recreational injuries across the country every year.
If you have been injured, or if your loved one has been seriously harmed or killed in a commercial or recreational maritime accident, it is crucial that you find a Memphis lawyer to fight for your fair compensation. Our specialization in this area includes:
- Jones Act Cases (River Crew Members’ Injuries and Deaths)
- Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act Cases (Dock Workers’ Injuries and Deaths)
- Recreational/Pleasure Boating Injuries and Deaths (Marine torts)
- Cruise Ship Passengers’ and Crew Members’ Injuries and Deaths
Because maritime cases involve federal law, we take on cases across the country. This includes maritime accident cases from major rivers with significant commercial and recreational traffic such as the:
- Mississippi River
- Ohio River
- Tennessee River
- Arkansas River
- All western rivers
Common Factors Leading to Maritime Injuries
Maritime injuries can be caused by a variety of accidents on the river. If equipment on board a vessel malfunctions or fails, workers may be left with catastrophic injuries such as:
- Crushing injuries
- Nerve damage
- Spinal cord trauma
- Brain trauma
- Internal damage
- Broken bones
Toxic chemical spills and electrical fires could result in severe burns and loss of one or more limbs as well. A towing company that is negligent could easily place a worker at a high risk of injury. A Memphis attorney familiar with maritime accident laws could help injured survivors pursue compensation for their medical bills and other costs from liable parties.
Recovering Monetary Damages
There are several possible ways a maritime worker could recover monetary damages for their injuries, depending on the details of the accident and the type of work they do. Generally speaking, a wide variety of damages could be available to injured maritime employees, including compensation for pain and suffering, medical bills, and lost wages.
When a maritime worker suffers injuries on the job due to another person’s negligence, their employer could be held liable for damages under the Jones Act. A Memphis legal professional representing a maritime worker under the Jones Act would need to prove that the employer was negligent in some way, whether it was by not adequately training crew members, failing to establish sufficient safety protocols or another act of carelessness. Furthermore, they would need to show that this negligence caused the worker’s injuries.
Jones Act Litigation: Designed to Protect Maritime Crew Members
The Jones Act is a long-standing and complex federal statute that helps protect maritime crew members who have been injured on a vessel (even if it is docked) because of employer negligence. Because maritime employees do not receive workers’ compensation, the Jones Act is a legal means of ensuring that you or your loved one are fairly compensated when employer negligence leads to sickness, injury of any kind, or death.
Navigating the complexity of the Jones Act is not something most attorneys are equipped to do. There are a relatively small number of law firms in the U.S. that specialize in Jones Act cases. The legal team at the Law Office of David E. Gordon has the Jones Act knowledge and experience you need to seek compensation confidently.
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
Another federal compensation program reserved for maritime dock workers who sustain injuries during their employment is the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, or the LHWCA. The LHWCA also allows injured dock workers to file a third-party lawsuit against a vessel owner if the vessel’s negligence caused or contributed to their injuries. For example, if the longshoreman’s accident was caused by a hidden defect on the vessel, the vessel owner could be held liable for damages. Elissa can provide additional guidance regarding an injured dock worker’s filing rights after a maritime accident.
Recreational/Pleasure Boating (Marine Torts)
Maritime laws protect not only the men and women working on U.S. waterways but also anyone who has been injured by another party on a navigable body of water. Often state regulations set limits regarding the damages injured parties may receive in personal injury cases. Maritime law is often a federal matter and can supersede any state caps or restrictions regarding compensation.
A knowledgeable maritime injury legal advisor will understand both the best course of action for your case and how to navigate the complexities of filing in state or federal courts. The maritime accident team at the Law Office of David E. Gordon in Memphis has the proven experience you need for your legal representation.
The Benefit of Hiring a Memphis Maritime Injury Attorney
Elissa M. Coombs leads the maritime litigation team at the Law Office of David E. Gordon where she represents people injured or killed in a maritime accident. Coombs spent the first 17 years of her career as a defense attorney specializing in boating, barge, and maritime accident cases. She now uses that experience to fight for injured workers and boaters against negligent employers, vessel owners, and their insurance companies. Representatives with her degree of skill and working knowledge of how insurance companies typically handle cases like yours are rare.
Along with an experienced personal injury support team, Elissa is well-equipped to give you strong representation in court and work for your compensation. She could advocate diligently on your behalf to ensure you receive all forms of compensation due to you. Call today more information about your legal rights and moving forward with your case.