SHREVEPORT MARITIME ACCIDENT LAWYER
Shreveport Maritime Accident Lawyer
Due to the dangerous nature of working offshore, there are many policies in place to protect a maritime worker in the event of a maritime accident. Unfortunately, many individuals still suffer serious, sometimes lifelong or even fatal injuries following such an accident. In these cases, an experienced boating accident lawyer with a complete understanding of the laws surrounding maritime injuries can help victims and/or their families seek financial compensation for the losses and damages that result.
Shreveport personal injury lawyer Joseph W. Greenwald, Jr. has represented clients across Louisiana in a variety of boating accident and maritime injury cases. He knows what it takes to fight for victims’ rights to compensation following a serious injury or wrongful death, and he is prepared to help guide you through the legal process and fight for you, too. If you believe you have a personal injury lawsuit (or wrongful death lawsuit) following a maritime accident, call the legal team at the Greenwald Law Firm today at (318) 219-7867 for a free consultation.
What is a Maritime Accident?
The word “maritime” simply means having to do with the sea or water. Most often, however, it deals with seafaring commercial (or military) activity. So while a maritime accident could refer to a personal watercraft-related boating accident on, say, Cross Lake, it is more likely that it is referring to large commercial boating accidents on inland waterways or the Gulf, for example.
Commercial boats can include anything from tug boats, barges, and supply or cargo boats to oil rigs, fishing vessels, and even passenger vessels (i.e., tour boats, cruise ships, etc.) If an accident occurs on any of these types of vessels and victims are left with injuries as a result, they may choose to seek legal recourse against any number of potentially liable parties.
Types of Maritime Claims
At the Greenwald Law Firm, we take on maritime accidents of all kinds, including (but not limited to) the following types of cases:
- Shipping Accidents
- Diving Accidents
- Oil Field Drilling Accidents
- Cruise Ship Accidents
- Fishing Accidents
- Recreational Boating Accidents
- Jones Act Cases
- Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act Cases
When you’ve been injured in an offshore boating accident, it’s important that you are familiar of the laws surrounding maritime injuries (also known as admiralty laws). For instance, when it comes to financial recovery for your personal injuries, there are different types of legal rights afforded to you depending on the situation and which Act you fall under. We’ll go into further detail below:
Jones Act Lawsuit
Under the Jones Act (46 U.S.C. § 30104), seamen who have been injured at sea within the scope of their employment may bring a personal injury lawsuit against their employers in either federal or state court. For seamen who have been killed while working at sea, this law also extends to family members who wish to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the employer. Though most cases involving maritime law do not allow the right to a jury trial, cases brought under the Jones Act do grant a trial by jury.
Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) is another federal law that provides injured maritime workers with financial compensation following a maritime accident. However, while the Jones Act is reserved for personal injury lawsuits, the LHWCA is a type of workers’ compensation claim. This means that those who file claims under the LHWCA may not sue their employer, but rather may be awarded benefits for things like medical bills and vocational rehabilitation services. You can learn more about the LHWCA here.
What Typically Causes Boating Accidents?
When it comes to recreational operation, most boating accidents are caused by negligence on behalf of the boat operator. For example, excessive speeding, jumping another boat’s wake, operating while under the influence, and other acts of negligence can all lead to recreational boat accidents. However, when it comes to commercial maritime claims, most accidents happen as a result of employer or worker negligence.
Failure to implement proper safety measures, improper loading, unloading, repairing and building, and malfunctioning machinery can all lead to catastrophic accidents. This includes things like fires and explosions, slip and falls, and drowning accidents.
An experienced Shreveport boating accident attorney like Joseph W. Greenwald, Jr. will investigate the cause of your accident and ensure all liable parties are held responsible for the part they played in your injuries.
How To Prevent Maritime Accidents and Injuries
There are a number of things that employers, boat operators, and offshore workers alike must do to ensure their own safety and prevent potentially significant injury or death. First and foremost, all vessels must have appropriate safety equipment onboard and easily accessible to workers. All workers should also be properly trained for not just accident prevention, but also what to do should an accident actually occur.
It must also be the protocol for all heavy equipment and machinery to be regularly inspected, maintained, and cleaned to ensure proper operation, as well as to keep the premises clear and free of potential hazards. Failure to implement these safety precautions can lead to serious worker injury and the potential liability of employers and other negligent parties.
Common Maritime Injuries
Maritime workers (like oil rig workers, for instance) have strenuous, labor-intensive jobs that are often hazardous. As you can imagine, when accidents happen in such a hazardous setting, serious injuries can result, often leading to catastrophic injuries that can put a maritime worker out of work indefinitely or may even result in wrongful death.
At Greenwald Law Firm, our Shreveport boating accident attorneys have seen all kinds of injuries stemming from a boating accident case. Some of the more common injuries we see in the sphere of maritime law include:
How Much Can I Get For My Maritime Accident Injury Claim?
What you are able to recover for your maritime accident claim depends on a variety of factors. For example, someone who suffered traumatic brain injuries or any other catastrophic injury from the accident will be entitled to much more than someone who sprained a muscle. It also largely depends on whether your claim falls under the Jones Act or the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act. Under the Jones Act, like with most personal injury cases, the injured party will file an insurance claim against the parties responsible. If a reasonable settlement cannot be agreed upon, a legal suit will be filed and the case will progress to court. Meanwhile, under the LHWCA, injured workers should receive benefits that cover things like lost wages and medical costs. In either case, a Louisiana personal injury lawyer can help maximize your claim.
How a Maritime Accident/Offshore Injury Attorney Can Help Your Case
An injury following a boat accident could result in a complete loss of income for the injured victim. Even worse, the families of workers who are injured or killed in an offshore accident could face financial ruin trying to pay medical expenses or funeral costs in addition to coping with the loss of income. That is why it is vital to contact an experienced maritime injury lawyer who can help you recover compensation for your accident.
The Greenwald Law Firm serves the Gulf Coast region in pursuing and winning personal injury cases, including oil rig accidents and accidents that occur on a barge, fishing boat, cruise ship, and more. Your Shreveport attorney will walk you through the entire legal process, from identifying the liable party in a boating accident lawsuit (employer, boat owner, boat operator, boat rental companies, equipment manufacturers, etc.) to negotiating with the insurance company and securing the appropriate benefits and compensation through a work injury claim. In cases of fatal maritime injuries, our Shreveport wrongful death attorneys also handle wrongful death claims for grieving families.
Call Shreveport Boating Accident Lawyer Joseph Greenwald Today for a Free Consultation
At Greenwald Law Firm, our Shreveport-Bossier City boating accident lawyers have more than a decade of experience handling maritime and offshore accident claims for injured clients across the state of Louisiana. If you or someone you love has suffered injuries while working offshore, allow Joey Greenwald and his dedicated legal team to help you seek compensation for the financial and emotional losses you’ve faced as a result.
To learn more about filing a claim or to establish an official attorney-client relationship today, call our North Louisiana law firm at (318) 219-7867 or contact us online to schedule your free legal consultation today.