The coastal waters of Louisiana see thousands of commercial fishing boats, barges, and oil rigs. There are so many port cities in Louisiana; workers fill hundreds of thousands of offshore jobs.
The offshore industry is quite unique. While the pay is good, offshore workers find themselves in an extremely hazardous environment, doing dangerous work. Extreme weather conditions, enormous tools and equipment, and hazardous chemicals all make for a volatile and risky environment.
In fact, the oilfield industry puts a tremendous amount of its resources toward safety. There is a considerable amount of specialized safety training required of offshore workers. However, despite these efforts to minimize accidents, injuries are still very common.
Unfortunately, when accidents happen on the job, professional medical treatment from doctors and hospitals are usually unavailable. Trained first responders can only provide so much assistance. Coast Guard response or helicopter evacuation is likely the best case scenario, but still not a quick response.
Unfortunately, accidents inevitably accompany offshore work. Injury and death are common. In fact, the fatality rate in the gas and oil industry is 7 times higher than any other profession in the U.S. As the official most dangerous industry in the country, it’s not surprising when offshore oil and gas workers suffer from life changing injuries.
The cause, scale, and severity of accidents can vary. Equipment failure, human error, and environmental/weather conditions are the main cause of most offshore accidents.
Exposure to caustic chemicals, pressurized equipment, and flammable/explosive substances are part of the everyday offshore environment.
Offshore rig workers are on shift working for 12 hours a day, with seven, fourteen, twenty-eight day long hitches. They eat, sleep, work, and live in danger.
If you have injuries due to an accident while working offshore, you need an attorney with extensive knowledge of the complex laws that govern the industry.
Call our office today for a FREE review of your personal injury case. We typically work on a contingent agreement basis, which means our fees are contingent upon the outcome of your case.
Don’t Delay! You may have a valid claim! Let us help you get your compensation before the statute of limitations expires!
If you were hurt working offshore, contact our Opelousas Louisiana Personal Injury Attorneys Today!
Because offshore accidents have the potential to cause severe injuries or even death, offshore injury cases are governed by specific maritime laws that are different from standard land accidents. Maritime law, or admiralty law, are the laws and regulations that govern offshore activities in navigable waters or on the open sea. Specifically, these laws usually involve two categories; The Jones Act and Maintenance and Cure. Both laws center on providing lost wages, living expenses, and medical care to seamen injured while working offshore.
If you are hurt while working at sea, you are eligible for benefits no matter who was at fault in your injury. Maintenance and cure are benefits that an injured seaman receives from an employer during their recovery.
These benefits include living expenses like rent, utilities, food, and medical costs. Moreover, you are eligible to receive this pay until you reach what is called, Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI). The term MMI means a full medical recovery with the approval of a physician to return to work.
Maintenance and cure also applies to workers who become ill with a disabling illness or medical condition. You are eligible for these benefits even if your condition was not work related. As in the cases of injuries, if you have an illness, you are eligible to receive maintenance and cure until you reach MMI.
The Jones Act, also known as the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, is federal legislation that protects American workers injured at sea. It gives qualified seamen, or their surviving spouse and dependents, the right to file suit against their employer when a crew member or ship owner’s negligence caused their accident or death.
Damages permitted under the Jones Act include medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of wages, and funeral expenses.
The Jones Act has multiple stipulations and requirements to qualify. Namely, you must be able to prove negligence on the part of your employer.
Additionally, there is a statute of limitations of 3 years to file a claim under the Jones Act. With this in mind, it is important to contact an Opelousas, Louisiana lawyer as soon as possible.
If you have an injury due to an offshore accident and are unsure whether you qualify, contact an Opelousas Louisiana lawyer with experience in maritime law to evaluate your case. The Law Offices of L. Clayton Burgess has over 20 years of experience with offshore accident cases.
We fight for our clients, negotiating with corporate lawyers and insurance adjusters to get the maximum amount of compensation possible. Unlike settlement mill law firms, we aren’t afraid to take a case to court if a fair settlement can’t be reached.
The lawyers at The Law Offices of L. Clayton Burgess have the expertise needed to get you the compensation you deserve. Personal injury consultations are always free. Contact us today to schedule a meeting with a maritime attorney. Our Opelousas, Louisiana lawyers operate on a no win/no fee basis. If we don’t recover damages on your case there is no cost to you. Don’t Delay, Call Clay!