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Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act Attorney

Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act

California Maritime Lawyer Preston Easley Assists Marine Construction Workers in CA and HI With Filing Injury Claims Under The Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act

The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) provides employment-injury and occupational-disease protection to approximately 500,000 workers who are injured or contract occupational diseases occurring on the navigable waters of the United States, or in adjoining areas, and for certain other classes of workers covered by extensions of this Act.

These benefits are paid directly by an authorized self-insured employer; or through an authorized insurance carrier; or, in particular circumstances, by a special fund administered directly by the Division of Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation, Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs within the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).

Jurisdiction: The Longshore Act covers marine construction workers who are injured on or next to navigable waters (piers, docks, seawalls, etc.)

Steps to Take to Protect Your Rights

  • When injured at work, notify your supervisor immediately. Take pictures and identify witnesses.
  • You must carefully guard you workers’ compensation rights and avoid signing forms that you do not understand. Do not assume that the company will voluntarily take care of you after you are injured.

Your Rights

  • You have a right to an initial free choice of physician under the Longshore Act. The employer cannot pick the doctor for you.
  • Your right to temporary total disability payments while you are out of work is determined by your treating physician, not by the company doctor.
  • Section 48 of the Longshore Act gives you the right to reinstatement and back wages if you are terminated for filing a claim or seeking benefits under the Longshore Act.
  • In addition to medical expenses and temporary disability payments, the employer must also pay for any permanent partial disability resulting from your injury.
  • If you are unable to work following an injury, the employer must pay you temporary disability payments equal to 2/3 of your average weekly wage for the 52 weeks prior to your disability.
  • A claim for Longshore compensation must be filed with the Department of Labor and your employer within one year of the date of injury or last payment of compensation.
  • You cannot sue your employer. You can only file a workers’ compensation claim against your employer, unless you are a member of the crew of a vessel (tug, workboat, barge, floating crane, etc.), in which case you may sue your employer directly as a seaman under the Jones Act.
  • If your injury is caused by an unsafe condition aboard a vessel, a defective product, or a negligent contractor, then you may file a lawsuit against the responsible third party.

Doctors And Medical Treatment

The company has the right to have you examined by their doctor, but do not allow their consulting physician to treat you.

  • Never choose a doctor recommended by the employer as your treating physician.
  • You cannot change doctors without the company’s permission unless a specialist is required.
  • Do not choose a chiropractor of general practitioner for an orthopedic injury.

Specific Injuries

  • Arm and leg injures are scheduled under the Longshore Act and have specific dollar values according to your percentage of permanent impairment.
  • Head, neck, back and hernia injuries are unscheduled under the Longshore Act and are only compensable if they result in future wage loss (loss of wage earning capacity). Such injuries entitle you to 2/3 of your weekly loss of wage earning capacity for life.
  • Hearing Loss. You may file a hearing loss claim against your employer at any time, even if some of your hearing loss was caused by prior employer or prior injury.
  • Cumulative Trauma. Back, knee, wrist, and other medical problems caused by repeated lifting, stair climbing, chipping, stress and strain, etc., are compensable under the Longshore Act. You need not have a specific injury or a specific date of injury.
  • Aggravation of a Preexisting Condition. Any work activity which aggravates, accelerates, or combines with a prior injury of pre-existing medical condition is compensable.
  • Time Limitations. If you have a work related medical condition, you should seek competent legal advice immediately. You must notify your employer within 30 days of any injury (there are some exceptions).

Time Limitations

If you have a work related medical condition, you should seek competent legal advice immediately. Under most circumstances, you must notify your employer within 30 days of any injury (there are some exceptions). Often a shipyard will promise a light duty job to an injured worker to keep him from filing a claim. When the light duty job does not materialize and the worker contacts an attorney, quite often it is too late to do anything. Do not gamble with you health and your future.

Experience Count When You Want the Compensation You Deserve

Preston Easley is an experienced maritime lawyer with considerable expertise in handling federal and state cases in the field of maritime and admiralty law. We will aggressively seek the maximum amount of compensation you are entitled to receive.   Preston Easley is a seasoned trial lawyer who has the qualifications, experience, and resources to take your case to court if a fair settlement cannot be obtained for you.  For a free initial consultation, call or email our law firm today.

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Cases We Handle

  • maritime worker working on ship

    Longshoremen & Shipyard Workers

    Longshoring and shipyard work are very dangerous occupations. Workers in these fields, along with marine construction workers, are covered by the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, a very generous no-fault workers’ compensation system. It covers medical expenses, temporary disability, permanent disability and vocational rehabilitation.

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  • sea vessel docked at US shore

    Jones Act Seamen

    A seaman is a member of the crew of a vessel or group of vessels under common ownership or control. The vessel can be anything from a raft to a cargo ship. We represent seamen who work aboard recreational vessels, tugboats, dredges, barges, skiffs, workboats and cargo ships. We also represent seamen who are marine construction workers

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  • Diving

    We represent people who have been injured in SCUBA diving accidents and Commercial diving accidents. We also handle diving boat accidents. Diving can be very dangerous. We successfully represented a commercial diver who was seriously injured while cleaning the propeller of a U.S. Navy ship at Pearl Harbor

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  • accident at construction site and hard hat on floor

    Construction & Industrial Accidents

    Construction and industrial sites can be very dangerous. Although you generally cannot sue your own employer for a construction site or industrial accident (generally workers’ compensation is your exclusive remedy against your employer) there are many circumstances in which you can file a third party lawsuit against an entity other than your employer for an unsafe condition at a work site which causes you to be injured

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  • Forklift and Crane Injuries Lawyer

    Crane & Forklift Accidents

    The Easley firm has extensive experience with crane and forklift accidents and workplace accidents involving dangerous equipment and machinery. These accidents can be caused by operator error and they can be caused by the unsafe and defective condition of the equipment

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  • auto accident involving two cars on a city street

    Motor Vehicle & Truck Accidents

    Motor vehicle accidents can result in serious injury and death. These kinds of accidents can involve automobiles, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles, pedestrians and unsafe road design and unsafe road conditions

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  • Catamaran Injuries Attorney

    Passenger Vessel Accidents

    Passenger accidents are common on recreational vessels, catamarans, tour boats and cruise ships.  They are frequently caused by rough sea conditions and unsafe conditions aboard the vessels.  The Easley firm has extensive experience in the field of maritime law.  We have made new law in the field of maritime law with numerous precedent setting decisions in the State Appellate Courts, the Ninth Circuit Federal Court

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  • Attorney California & Hawaii

    Defense Base Act

    The Defense Base Act is an extension of the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act which covers civilian employees of U.S. defense contractors injured overseas, including war zones. The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensations Act as extended by the Defense Base Act is a very generous no fault workers’ compensation system

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Areas Where We Practice

Preston Easley is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. He served five years of active duty as a Naval officer — three years as a deck officer on a fast frigate and two years as a patrol boat skipper. Mr. Easley also served aboard a tank landing ship in the reserves.

waves

California

Hawaii

Let Us Get You The Compensation You Deserve

Preston Easley is an experienced lawyer with considerable expertise in handling federal and state personal injury cases. He will aggressively seek the maximum amount of compensation you are entitled to receive. Attorney Easley represents victims of serious and fatal accidents involving cars, trucks, construction projects and maritime work.

Construction Workers We Help

  • Crane and Forklift Operators
  • Pile Drivers
  • Scaffold Workers
  • Iron Workers
  • Carpenters
  • Electricians
  • Operating Engineers
  • Electricians

Maritime Workers We Help

  • National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO) Shipyard Workers
  • Manson Construction Company Workers
  • Manson Dredging Workers
  • Dutra Dredging Workers
  • Commercial Divers
  • Scuba Divers
  • Commercial Fisherman
  • Government Maritime Claims Against the Navy, Army Corps of Engineers, or the US Coast Guard, etc.
  • Marine Construction Workers
  • Offshore Oil and Gas Workers
  • Seamen
  • Shipyard Workers
  • YYK Enterprises, Inc.
  • Pacific Tugboat Service
  • Long Beach Container Terminal
  • Tugboat, Dredge, Longshoremen, and Ferry Workers
  • Barge Crews and Barge Workers
  • Marisco Limited
  • HL Welding
  • SSA Marine
  • Catalina Express
  • R.E. State Engineering
  • Shimmick Construction
  • Nova Group
  • American Scaffolding
  • Safway Scaffolding
  • Kirby Tugs
  • Crowley Tugboats
  • P&R Water Taxi
  • Continental Maritime
  • Pacific Ship Repair
  • Seaward Marine
  • Healy Tibbitts
  • General Construction
  • BAE Shipyards
  • South Coast Welding
  • Matson
  • Pasha
  • Hawaii Stevedores, Inc.
  • McCabe, Hamilton & Renny
  • Young Brothers
  • Sause Bros.
  • Foss Maritime
  • Fenix Marine Services
  • ITS
  • Total Terminals
  • TraPac
  • PCMC
  • Maersk
  • Yang Ming
  • China Overseas Shipping
  • Evergreen

Boating Accidents

  • Catamaran Accidents
  • Charter and Tour Boats
  • Cruise Ship Accidents
  • Passenger Accidents
  • Jet Ski and Personal Watercraft
  • Motorboat Accidents
  • Recreational Accidents
  • Scuba Diving Accidents
  • Speed Boat Accidents
  • Yachts and Sail Boat Accidents
  • Repair Accidents
  • Crew Accidents
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