If you’ve been injured on a cruise ship or a on a work boat of some type, you may have been recommended to a maritime attorney. But what is a maritime lawyer and why should you call one?
Maritime lawyers are uniquely qualified in the field of maritime and admiralty law. These specialists have expertise in the body of law governing oceans, rivers, streams and lakes as well as some maritime-related work performed on land.
Admiralty and maritime law is a complex body of statutes and case law that were developed over the course of many years to regulate the relations between ship owners, cargo owners, passengers and crews of vessels operating in coastal and international waters.
The legal process can vary from state-to-state depending on the nature of the issue at hand. International and federal laws may also come into play.
Why would I need a specialist in Maritime Law?
Most people – and many lawyers – are unfamiliar with this body of law. Federal statutes and tickets of passage create statute of limitations, venue, and other issues that are unique to maritime law.
Vessel owners, and in particular their insurers and representatives, have a far greater knowledge of these laws and procedures than you do. With far-reaching and costly consequences to the injury victim, substantial sums tend to be at risk.
A capable maritime lawyer on your side can also help eliminate the advantage vessel owners and their insurers have in dealing with your claim.
Maritime lawyers can assist with state level workman’s compensation claims or the federal Jones Act, which provides for larger awards in areas like medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, mental anguish, disfigurement or wrongful death.
An injury incurred while on the job or on vacation can be life changing. To ensure you are treated fairly and earn the benefits you are entitled to, speak to a professional.