What Compensation Is Available Under the Jones Act?
The federal government passed the Jones Act to provide seaman with the ability to file lawsuits against their employer in order to receive compensation for an injury that occurs as part of their work duties. If you are employed as a seaman and have been injured on the job, it is important to understand what types of compensation you are eligible to receive under the act.
Lost Earnings and Earning Capacity
You may be eligible to receive any earnings you will lose as a result of your injury. In addition, you may be able to receive any lost earning capacity. With proper evidence, you may be able to claim damages for promotions that you may have earned but will no longer be eligible to receive due to your injury. Lost wages and earning capacity includes not only wages, but benefits as well including health insurance, vacation time pension or contributions to your 401(k). For example, if you earned $90,000 annually at the time you were injured and had benefits worth $10,000 per year, your lost earnings are $100,000. Calculating your earning capacity is complicated which is why you need to discuss your case with an attorney.
Medical and Other Health Expenses
You are eligible to receive compensation for any medical bills you incur as a result of your injury a well as for future medical treatment. Almost any type of medical treatment is compensable as long as your physician determines that the treatment is necessary. Some of the treatments that are covered under the act include:
- Physical therapy
- Transportation to and from treatment
- Occupational therapy
- Vocational therapy
- Massage therapy
- Full-time nursing care
- Mental health treatment
Pain and Suffering
Unlike other types of workers’ compensation, you may also be eligible for compensation for both mental and physical pain and suffering. Physical pain and suffering includes actual pain from injuries as well as the pain suffered after disfigurement, scarring or permanent injury. Mental pain could include mental anguish, emotional distress, fear, shock or even post-traumatic stress disorder. There are no guidelines for determining the value of pain and suffering which is often based on a judge or jury’s background and experience to determine what is fair.
If you or a loved one was injured while working as a seaman, it is important that you discuss your case with our attorneys. The lawyers at Lundy Law will fight for your rights under the law and work to get you the compensation you are entitled to receive. You can arrange for a no obligation consultation by calling 1-800-Lundy Law or completing the form online.