Do I Need a Jones Act Lawyer in Houston?

Chances are if you’re working in the maritime industry, you will need a Jones Act Lawyer in Houston if you ever suffer an injury. The law firm of Kirkendall Dwyer LLP can offer their services in such an event. However, it’s a good idea to take their information down now so you have it ready in case of an emergency.

The Jones Act is legislation that was passed back in 1920. While it handles certain areas regarding who can ship goods to and from American ports, it also covers matters regarding maritime workers’ compensation.

Simply because you’re a maritime worker doesn’t mean you receive the benefits of the Jones Act, though. It only applies to seamen who are working on or aboard ships that are currently active. While this doesn’t mean the ship has to actually be moving at the time of the accident, the ship’s status needs to be considered active. After filing a claim under the Jones Act, the court will confirm your ship meets this criterion.

In order to receive compensation under the Jones Act, your Jones Act Lawyer in Houston will need to prove that your injury was the result of someone else’s negligence. Guilty parties could include the ship’s owner, its master, members of the crew or your employer. Unsafe conditions could also be the culprit.

A Jones Act Lawyer in Houston can help you make these determinations before you go spending time and money on a case.

If you do have a case, a qualified Jones Act attorney can also help you get the compensation you’re due. You could be compensated for lost wages, future wages, pain and suffering, medical expenses, and more.

Hopefully this article helps illustrate how important it is to have a Jones Act lawyer at your side in order to benefit from said act. If you’re not sure whether or not the Jones Act covers you in a certain situation, call Kirkendall Dwyer LLP today.

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NTSB Member Testified About Maritime Transportation Safety Issues

NTSB member Mark Rosekind testified in October before the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on coast guard and maritime transportation safety issues. The USCG and NTSB work together closely to evaluate maritime accidents that meet the criteria for review. The NTSB takes the lead on investigations of accidents with major marine casualties. It will determine the facts and circumstances of the event and will determine what likely caused the accident.

In some instances, the USCG may lead the investigation with support from the NTSB. Additionally, the NTSB oversees and investigates all major marine casualties that happen during the year, which is typically about 30 to 35 occurrences. It is clear that the two agencies are planning to work together to support each other as they move forward in the review of maritime incidents.

One of the main areas of concern is safety for large passenger vessels. This is becoming more important after the Costa Concordia accident in 2011. After that accident there have been several well-publicized incidents of power loss and fires aboard large passenger cruise ships. These incidents are under investigation by the USCG. Incidents that happen in international waters are still investigated by the USCG with help from the NTSB as needed.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has representatives from many countries. The U.S. official representative to the IMO is the USCG. Other countries that have representatives include the UK, Japan, Australia, Sweden, Denmark, Canada, Ireland, and Finland among others.

Maritime safety is certainly an important issue. A Texas maritime attorney is experienced in all maritime matters and will review any case to determine how to proceed. Every case is different so it’s important to have an experienced Texas maritime attorney look at the accident. These accidents can be complex and require a Texas maritime attorney with a strong knowledge of the maritime laws and how they apply to your situation.


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Recovering Compensation When Injured on an Oil Rig

Men and women that work as gas or oil workers and have been injured on a floating rig and jack-up rig are typically covered by maritime injury law, specifically the Jones Act. This also includes being injured when being transported by helicopter or boat to the rig. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that 823 gas and oil extraction workers between 2003 in 2010 were killed on the job.[i]

Maritime lawyers handle a variety of cases for individuals seeking to recover compensation for disability, suffering, pain, and lost wages. This is often a result of negligence by the employer that was either a direct cause of any injury or something that contributed to it.

Offshore structures and drilling rigs create an exceedingly hostile work environment. The conditions that the gas and oil workers are expected to deal with place them in serious danger. In addition, the escalated levels of production activity along with individuals working together in a closed environment maximize both profits for the company and an increased likelihood of becoming seriously injured for the help.

The most common types of dangers on a drilling rig include:

  • Accidents involving slips and falls
  • Blocker cable breaks
  • Falling objects
  • Faulty grating
  • Negligence when operating equipment
  • Cathead slips

Based on the specifics of each offshore oil rig accident, the injured party is likely able to collect compensation through a competent maritime injury attorney in a court case involving personal injury law. In addition, those that have been injured when performing work on a fixed platform will likely be covered by other federal law including the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act.

Maritime injury law is complex, challenging to understand, and extremely complicated. Any individual that is suffered when working on a fixed rig or floating rig should seek out a competent attorney to handle their case.

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