Tag Archives: Death on the High Seas Act

Maritime Law (Admiralty Law)

What is Maritime Law?

Maritime law, often called admiralty law, is a set of legal rules and practices governing the business of employment and transportation of people and goods over or near navigable waters. If you have been injured while employed by a vessel or while you were a social guest on a vessel, it is important to consult with attorney as soon as possible to help you understand what conditions must be met to apply maritime law.

“Navigable waters” is a legal term describing all waters that are capable of transporting people or cargo between the states and other countries. Inland lakes that do not connect to an interstate waterway or the open sea would not meet this test. As a matter of law, the open sea and waterways used for interstate commerce (such as rivers) are navigable waters.

For an incident to trigger maritime jurisdiction it must have created a potential hazard to traditional commerce and there must be a sufficient relationship between the incident and traditional maritime activities.

Maritime Claims

Maritime law applies to the operation of most types of vessels, from the largest ocean going cargo vessel, to fishing vessels, to Jet Skis®. It also applies to more than accidents; it governs employment issues such as wage and labor disputes or sexual and racial harassment, insurance disputes, maritime property damage, loss of cargo, damage to shoreside property by vessels, repairers of vessels, fishing rights and other issues.

People who make their living working on boats and qualify as “seamen” have special remedies available to them. Congress enacted the Maritime Marine Act of 1920, commonly known as the Jones Act, which provides substantial benefits to seamen injured at sea.

The Jones Act

Boating accidents may injure a variety of people who work on a boat or ship. The Jones Act is a federal law that extends the provisions of the Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA), a statute that provides remedies for injured workers, in order to provide similar remedies for seamen.

If an injured crewmember can prove negligence by the employer, then the injured worker may recover damages for pain, suffering, disability and future medical benefits.

Death on the High Seas Act (DOSHA)

The Death on the High Seas Act is a federal statute that creates a cause of action for a spouse, dependent or family member of an individual who has been killed on the high seas due to a wrongful act, negligence or disrepair. 46 U.S.C.A. § 30302. According to statute, the high seas are considered those beyond three nautical miles from the United States shore. Family members of deceased crew members may seek compensation for financial loss they have suffered due to the deaths of their loved ones. If multiple individuals have suffered losses, the court will apportion the amount of compensation in accordance to the amount of loss suffered by each individual. If you have suffered the loss of a loved one under DOHSA, you normally have three years from the time the death occurred to bring your claim for compensation.

Los Angeles Area Maritime Law Attorneys – Long Beach, CA Trial Lawyers

Maritime or admiralty law is federal law that differs significantly from the state laws governing personal injury claims. For injured seamen, claims under the Jones Act are not the same as typical workers’ compensation claims.

If you are the victim of a maritime accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injury. For a free consultation with an experience lawyer to discuss possible claims and your legal rights under maritime law, contact our Southern California Personal Injury law firm today.

Maritime Injury and Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Exceptional Representation in Maritime Injury and Wrongful Death Cases

The maritime law attorneys of Stolpman, Krissman, Elber & Silver represent passengers who were injured while aboard a boat, ship or other vessel and injured maritime workers who sustained on-the-job injuries. We also represent survivors of those who died a wrongful death due to negligence.

Our Maritime Injury Practice Includes:

  • Passengers: Whether you were injured on a neighbor’s sailboat, a Jet Ski, a ferry or an excursion boat, you may have the right to recover financial compensation for damages caused by negligence. Our maritime injury lawyers will review your case and determine whether you have a case. To learn more, please visit our boat accidents and injuries page.
  • Jones Act Injuries: Injured officers and crewmembers working aboard ships, boats and other types of vessels on navigable waters are entitled to compensation for lost wages from the time of the injury, medical expenses, pain, suffering, disfigurement and mental anguish. If negligence or the unseaworthiness of the vessel caused your injury, please contact our law firm.
  • Death on the High Seas Act: This law regulates the compensation of dependents of those who died a wrongful death while working on a vessel while it was three or more nautical miles off the coast of any American state or U.S. territory.
  • Longshoreman & Harbor Workers’ Claims: If you were injured while working as a longshoreman, harbor worker or stevedore, it is important to have an experienced maritime injury lawyer review your case to see that you are receiving all the benefits and compensation to which you are entitled.

Boating Accidents

We also represent those injured in recreational boating accidents caused by the negligence of others. We have obtained significant amounts of financial compensation for victims of boating accidents and the survivors of those who died a wrongful death. We also represent crew members and passengers injured aboard commercial vessels in maritime injury claims.

Whether you were injured in a boating collision involving a power boat, sail boat, Jet Ski or any other type of watercraft, you can depend on our legal team to pursue maximum financial compensation for the full extent of your injuries and other damages.

Contact the attorneys of Stolpman, Krissman, Elber & Silver, LLP, to arrange a free consultation about your maritime injury or wrongful death case. From offices in Long Beach, our lawyers represent clients in the Los Angeles area and throughout Southern California. We represent client injured on the Pacific Ocean and in Long Beach Harbor, Oakland Harbor, San Francisco Harbor and San Diego Harbor.

Suggested Reading:  Wrongful Death FAQs