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Gulf Coast, Mississippi Maritime Injury Attorneys

Platform / Oil Rig Injuries

Biloxi, MS Jones Act - Maritime Law Attorneys

Platform and oil rig injury cases require very special expertise. We must determine which laws apply in your case and that can make a huge difference in how much compensation you may be entitled to as well as how to file your claim. It is common for employers to try to prove that Jones Act injuries fall under Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation (LWHCA) instead. The experienced Mississippi maritime attorneys of Reeves & Mestayer, PLLC can determine which type of case you truly have and help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

The Jones Act and Platform / Oil Rig injuries

Under the Jones Act you can sue your employer for negligence and receive compensation that goes far beyond the minimal benefits of LWHCA. To do so you must qualify as a seaman. One of the factors involved in proving that you are a seaman is to prove that you were working on a vessel. Platforms and oil rigs qualify as vessels if they are not permanently moored.

LHWCA and Platform / Oil Rig Injuries

LWHCA covers maritime workers who are not seamen. If you have been injured on a platform or oil rig that does not qualify as a vessel, you can claim compensation under LWHCA no matter who was at fault for your accident.

Challenges for Victims of Platform / Oil Rig Accidents

Your employer will try to minimize its exposure. The Jones Act places a very high duty of care on employers. Any negligence on the part of your employer that may have contributed to or caused your injury is sufficient to establish fault. If you can win a Jones Act case against your employer, that is the most beneficial type of case for you. If your employer believes you have any chance of winning it will try to claim that the platform or oil rig did not qualify as a vessel.

Another tactic your employer may use is to automatically start LWHCA payments, in the hopes that you will just go with it and assume that you do not have a case. You cannot claim both LWHCA and Jones Act.

If your employer feels confident that you cannot prove fault it may try to get out of paying LWHCA benefits by claiming that you are a seaman when you are not. LWHCA does not cover seamen. This is a far less likely scenario because it can create liability for your employer in other cases.

If you or a loved one is in need of legal assistance in Biloxi, Mississippi or anywhere on the Gulf Coast, please call Reeves & Mestayer, PLLC at (228) 374-5151 or toll free (877) 377-5152 or submit an online questionnaire. The initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to handle your case, we will work on a contingency fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary recovery of funds. In many cases, a lawsuit must be filed before an applicable expiration date, known as a statute of limitations. Please call right away to ensure that you do not waive your right to possible compensation.