Longshoremen are typically prohibited from recovering financial compensation for their personal bodily injury directly from their employers. However, third-party claims against another entity – such as the company which owns the ship, or a subcontractor who may be held liable for the worker’s injury – are allowed under the law. Any ship, dock, or pier employee who has suffered significant personal injury while on the job would likely benefit from at least consulting with an attorney about their legal rights.
If a longshore worker has been injured by a defective product or equipment, then the manufacturer of the product or the company responsible for maintenance may be held liable for the worker’s injuries. Our attorneys understand the many ways in which a longshore worker may be able to recover financial compensation for their injuries, and are willing to pursue every possible avenue of justice for our clients.
The award-winning attorneys at Davis Law Group, P.S. have more than 20 years of experience in representing injury victims in Seattle, throughout Washington state, and throughout the United States.
Legal Rights of Longshoremen in Injury Claims
While state Workers’ Compensation laws significantly restrict an injured longshore worker’s legal options for pursuing a claim against their own employer, federal law permits injured longshoremen to file a lawsuit against a third-party which is not the worker’s direct employer.
Under Section 905(b) of the Longshore Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA), longshoremen are permitted to “seek damages in a third-party negligence action against the owner of the vessel on which he was injured.” Furthermore, the United States Supreme Court has officially recognized three individual duties owed to longshoremen by the actual owners of a vessel: 1) the “turnover duty” which relates to the condition of the ship upon the commencement of stevedoring operations; 2) the “active control” duty, which applies once stevedoring operations have begun and provides that a shipowner must use reasonable care to prevent injuries to longshoremen in areas that remain under the active control of the vessel; and 3) the “duty to intervene,” which concerns the vessel’s obligations with regard to cargo operations in areas under principal control of the independent stevedore.”
Why Hiring A Personal Injury Attorney Makes Sense
While these issues are some of the primary factors to be considered when investigating a potential longshore worker’s injury claim, there are a host of potential legal issues that may arise when a longshore worker is seriously injured on the job. These cases are much more complex than and involve a variety of federal and state regulations that are not applicable to the average personal injury case.
If you or a loved one has been injured on a ship, dock, pier, or otherwise in the course of maritime duties, it may be in your best interests to consult with an experienced longshoremen injury attorney. Contact the attorneys at Davis Law Group today to have your case reviewed for free and learn more about your legal rights and options for recovering financial compensation.