Did you or a loved one sustain injuries in an accident off the coast of Lafayette, LA? Recovering compensation for maritime injuries can be a challenge. An experienced Lafayette maritime injury lawyer at Kenny Habetz Injury Law can help. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and more.
With over a decade of experience, our lawyers have the tools and resources to help you recover fair compensation for your injuries. We’ve already recovered millions of dollars on behalf of injured clients like you.
Give our law offices in Lafayette, Louisiana, a call today. Our lawyer will review your case for free and help you understand your legal options and rights. Contact us at (337) 399-9000.
How Kenny Habetz Injury Law Can Help With a Maritime Injury Claim in Lafayette
It’s important to have a skilled Lafayette personal injury lawyer by your side to help navigate the complex maritime laws that may apply in your case. Our team at Kenny Habetz Injury Law is up to the challenge.
Our founding attorney has been recognized as a National Trial Lawyer “Top 100 Trial Lawyer” and made Expertise’s list of “Best Personal Injury Lawyers in Lafayette.” We’ve earned a reputation for providing aggressive, smart legal representation to clients across Lafayette.
When you trust us with your case, you can expect us to:
- Carefully investigate the circumstances of the accident
- Identify all sources of compensation
- Determine how much compensation you should be receiving
- Fight for you if your claim is denied or undervalued
- Negotiate with the insurance companies on your behalf
Our Lafayette personal injury attorney is never afraid to take your case to trial if necessary. In short, we’ll do everything in our power to help you get the full compensation you deserve.
The Maritime Industry in Lafayette: An Overview
Lafayette is a coastal city. Like most cities in Louisiana, the maritime industry plays a huge role in Lafayette’s economy. In fact, it’s estimated that one out of every five jobs in Louisiana is connected to the maritime industry. Maritime work generates about $3.5 billion in employment income each year.
The term “maritime accident” refers to an accident that happens on the water. Unlike recreational boating accidents, maritime accidents tend to involve maritime workers or accidents that occur at sea.
At Kenny Habetz Injury Law, we handle all types of maritime accident claims, including:
- Cruise ship accidents
- Commercial fishing accidents
- Shrimp boat accidents
- Offshore oil rig accidents
- Accidents involving marine cranes
- Barge accidents
- Tugboat accidents
- Crude oil tanker accidents
- Cargo ship accidents
- Diving support vessel accidents
- Accidents in shipyards and on docks or piers
These cases are particularly complicated because they don’t always involve Louisiana personal injury or workers’ compensation laws. The laws that apply will depend on both the circumstances of the accident and where the accident occurred.
What Laws Govern My Maritime Injury Claim?
Many offshore accident cases involve maritime industry employees. Unlike employees who are injured on dry land, you can’t simply file a claim under Louisiana workers’ compensation laws. However, several federal laws exist to protect you.
Depending on the facts, your case may be governed by:
- The Jones Act (also known as the Merchant Marine Act)
- Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA)
- Longshoremen & Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA)
- Limitation of Liability Act
- Death on the High Seas Act
We understand the complex state, federal and maritime laws that may apply in your case. During a free consultation, our experienced maritime injury lawyer will evaluate the facts and identify the laws that govern them. That way, we can give you a better idea of the types of compensation you may be entitled to receive.
The Jones Act
The Jones Act provides compensation to injured maritime workers who can satisfy one of the following criteria:
- More than 30% of your time is spent aboard a vessel, and you contribute to its operation
- You play a “substantial role” in the operation of the vessel
- You have a “direct connection” to the vessel
In other words, the Jones Act provides compensation to injured workers who qualify as “seamen.”
Longshoremen & Harbor Workers Compensation Act
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) covers many maritime employees who don’t qualify for compensation under The Jones Act.
You may be entitled to benefits under the LHWCA if your maritime injuries were sustained while you were working on:
- The “navigable waters” of the United States
- Docks or piers
- Shipping areas
In other words, you may be entitled to LHWCA benefits even if you primarily work on land adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico.
Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act
The Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) applies if you were injured while working on “submerged lands lying seaward and outside of the area of lands beneath navigable waters.”
As an example, the OCSLA applies in many cases involving injured oil rig workers who do not qualify for compensation under The Jones Act or LHWCA.
What Is My Lafayette Maritime Accident Case Worth?
Like any car accident case, the value of your maritime injury case will depend primarily on the severity of your injuries. If your injuries were severe, you’ll likely receive more compensation than if your injuries are minor.
Key factors to consider when determining your case value include:
- Whether you can perform “light duty” work during recovery
- The cost of your medical treatment
- Whether your injuries are temporary or permanent
- Your wages prior to the injury
- The laws that govern your case
Federal and maritime laws typically limit the types of compensation injured maritime workers can recover. Most often, you’ll be limited to recovering your economic damages.
The only way to get a fair sense of your case value is to speak with an experienced attorney. At Kenny Habetz Injury Law, we offer free case evaluations. For more details about how much your personal injury case is worth, call to schedule yours today.
What Types of Damages Are Available to Maritime Accident Victims?
The types of damages you can recover depend on the laws that govern your case. In almost every case, however, you can expect to recover compensation for your economic damages.
Examples of those damages include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning potential if your injuries are permanent
- Nursing care
The vessel owner may be liable for providing “maintenance and cure” benefits during your recovery. These benefits also compensate injured workers for their living expenses until they have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI) or are able to return to work.
If Louisiana personal injury laws apply in your case, you may also seek compensation for your non-economic damages.
These damages often include:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Severe depression
- Anxiety disorders
- Diminished quality of life
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Physical disfigurement and scarring
- Loss of consortium
Kenny Habetz Injury Law will help you seek full compensation for the losses you have suffered. Call our law firm today to schedule a free consultation with a Lafayette maritime injury attorney who can answer your questions.
Our Lawyer in Lafayette Will Fight To Recover Compensation for All of Your Maritime Injuries
Accidents that occur on the water often lead to severe injuries–especially if you cannot receive immediate medical attention.
At Kenny Habetz Injury Law, we often represent clients who have suffered:
- Broken bones
- Brain injuries, whether caused by trauma, oxygen deprivation, or exposure to toxic substances
- Back injuries
- Soft tissue damage
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head and neck injuries
- Amputations and loss of limbs
- Organ damage
- Catastrophic injuries
- Wrongful death of a loved one
Some injuries are so serious that you can’t leave the hospital. Our lawyer can come to you. Contact our team today to arrange your free case evaluation.
What Causes Most Maritime Accidents in Lafayette, Louisiana?
Some of the most common causes of maritime accidents include:
- Unseaworthy conditions
- Lack of proper safety equipment
- Defective machinery or equipment
- Negligent hiring practices, including failure to train and supervise employees
- Ignoring maritime industry rules and regulations
- Ignoring company safety protocols
- Unsafe working conditions
- Inclement weather
- Distracted workers
- Drug or alcohol use
- Communication failures
- Overworking and fatigue
- Dangerous property conditions
- Workplace violence
It’s important to identify the cause of your accident. If you don’t know why the accident happened, you can’t hold all responsible parties accountable.
How Long Do I Have To Take Legal Action After a Maritime Accident in Louisiana?
Different deadlines will apply depending on the laws that govern your case.
For example, you have three years to file a Jones Act claim. If Louisiana state law applies, you have only one year to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Once the statute of limitations passes, you can’t recover compensation for your injuries. Our lawyers will help you determine the correct deadline in your case and take action quickly to preserve your right to compensation.
Contact a Lafayette Maritime Injury Attorney for a Free Consultation
Were you injured in a maritime accident? Call Kenny Habetz Injury Law today to discuss your case with an experienced Lafayette maritime injury attorney who can help you fight for full compensation.
Our Lafayette, LA personal injury law office also provides:
- Car Accident Attorney in Lafayette, LA
- Bicycle Accident Attorneys in Lafayette, LA
- Brain Injury Lawyer in Lafayette, LA
- Construction Accident Lawyers in Lafayette, LA
- Motorcycle Accident Attorneys in Lafayette, LA
- Pedestrian Accident Lawyers in Lafayette, LA
- Truck Accident Attorney in Lafayette, LA
- Workplace Accident Lawyer in Lafayette, LA
- Wrongful Death Attorneys in Lafayette, LA
- Slip and Fall Accident Lawyers in Lafayette, LA
- Medical Malpractice Attorneys in Lafayette, LA
- Product Liability Attorney in Lafayette, LA