Many people get injured while working on tankers, offshore oil rigs and drill barges. Others get incapacitated while engaging in commercial diving or after exposure to toxic substances while in the sea. It is however unfortunate that some unscrupulous employers often delay the release of medical funds and compensation for those who are injured while at sea. These accidents are sometimes a result of negligence by a third party. Those who get injured in such accidents should hire Zehl & Associates, a Houston offshore injury lawyer to represent them.
Accidents that occur aboard ships and other marine vessels are a common occurrence. In most cases, they are caused by malfunctioning machines, poor maintenance of the vessels or the use of defective equipment. Offshore work is associated with a lot of risk with research showing that maritime work is the most hazardous occupation in the US. The offshore injury law was thus enacted to protect seafarers and any other maritime employees. Those who get injured in the course of their work need to understand that there are time limits as far as filing claims is concerned. This explains why injured offshore workers ought to seek legal counsel immediately.
Hiring an Offshore Injury Attorney
There are certain conditions that often force those who are affected by offshore accidents or their families, to seek the services of a Houston offshore injury lawyer. All these conditions are captured in the Jones Act, which addresses the rights of seamen. These are the conditions that highlight the role of offshore injury attorneys.
Those employed by marine companies often encounter tough working conditions in high seas. These employees regularly handle heavy equipment and also toil in extremely dangerous working environments. Injuries are also quite common while at sea. Injured employees can however file lawsuits against liable third parties. Some employers might try distancing themselves from any blame. To bring such dishonest employers to book, it is imperative that the injured workers seek legal advice from offshore injury lawyers.
The attorneys can seek redress on their behalf. Clients can also benefit from the services of these legal experts in the event that they wish to sue their employers. Such claims should be filed as soon as possible because under the Jones Act, there are set timelines. The expiry of these deadlines means the injured workers have to forfeit their right to compensation. The lawyers also offer guidance about the most applicable law and the options available as far as filing for compensation is concerned.
Exposure to Toxic Substances
Many marine workers raise health complains, which are normally caused by exposure to dangerous chemicals such as benzene and asbestos. Those working as loaders on ships are the most affected since their degrees of exposure are quite high. Even though the symptoms may not be immediately noticed, such employees may develop chest, lung and abdominal complications in the long run.
Whereas it is impossible to reverse such conditions, those who are affected deserve redress. It might however be problematic for them to present their cases to a jury without legal help. They can only lodge successful claims with the help of a Houston offshore injury lawyer. Funds generated from such lawsuits will go a long way in paying for surgical operations, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. Under normal circumstances, an employer might not pay for such services for his or her workers. This further stresses the significant role that these practitioners play.
The importance of Houston offshore injury lawyers should not be downplayed at all. Their work extends beyond helping clients to lay claim to benefits. They can also represent those who are being sued in court. When choosing these practitioners, clients should ensure that they consider their experience and qualification, the area of specialization and their reputation. Membership to professional associations, which act as an umbrella body for offshore lawyers is of great importance too. Choosing the most competent attorney goes a long way in ensuring that all claims made will be paid.