Maritime Law
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Seasoned Representation For Hawaii Maritime Claims

Container Ship Accident

If you’ve been injured while on the water or during a marine activity, contact a qualified and experienced Honolulu maritime lawyer. The Law Offices of Jan M. Weinberg in Honolulu can help to ensure that you receive the care and maximum compensation you are due after a serious accident. Our founding attorney, Jan M. Weinberg, has more than three decades of experience serving the people of Hawaii. Our firm represents victims of maritime accidents, including passengers on commercial tours as well as seamen or fishermen injured while working on vessels.

Damages For Injured Seamen

Under the Jones Act and other maritime laws, a seaman injured in the course of performing their duties is entitled to sue the employer and to recover damages for pain and suffering, medical bills and earnings loss. In addition, the seaman is entitled to benefits known as maintenance and cure. ‘Maintenance’ is the payment by the employer of the cost of food and lodging to cover the daily costs of living. The amount paid by employers for maintenance can be as low as $30 per day, which falls short of what is needed in today’s times. We will negotiate the daily rate paid by your employer to obtain a more favorable payment by the employer.

Seamen Have The Right To Choose Their Own Medical Provider

Unfortunately, many employers of seamen are harsh in the treatment of their injured employees. It is common for employers to refer injured seamen for medical treatment or evaluations, ironically known as ‘independent’ medical examinations, which are frequently performed by hired guns loyal to the employers. Injured seamen have the right to be treated by physicians they choose. If you are an injured seaman and your employer is forcing you to seek medical treatment with a physician it has chosen, you should call Law Offices of Jan M. Weinberg for assistance. We are knowledgeable about physicians who are qualified to treat your injuries.

What Seamen Should Do Following A Serious Workplace Injury

If you are a seaman who is injured seriously at work, it is imperative to contact an attorney as soon as possible. Often, employers will attempt to obtain statements from injured employees who are not represented by legal counsel. The employees can make statements that are damaging to their cases, especially when in severe pain and under the effects of medication. Your employer may also pressure you to alter your report to favor the company. You need an attorney who can address your concerns and protect your legal rights.

Injured seamen are also entitled to ‘cure’, or medical treatment for the injuries suffered in the accident. The choice of health care provider is up to the employee. ‘Cure’ also pays for prescription drugs, mileage costs to and from medical visits, and parking. A good record of receipts should be kept by the injured client and provided to the employer on a regular basis

What To Do If You Have Been Denied Maintenance And Cure Benefits

A United States Supreme Court decision has empowered injured seamen to fight back against employers who attempt to deprive them of the maintenance and cure benefits to which they are entitled. In Townsend v. Atlantic Sounding, the U.S. Supreme Court held that if an employer intentionally fails to pay proper maintenance and cure, injured seamen can sue for punitive damages.

Unseaworthiness Claims

This doctrine enables an injured seaman to recover damages where the vessel on which work is being performed is not reasonably fit for its intended purpose. If a vessel is found to be ‘unseaworthy,’ strict liability is imposed on the vessel owner. Examples of unseaworthiness include:

  • Failure to have appropriate safety procedures and practices
  • Equipment that is defective, or failure to have the appropriate equipment
  • Violation of federal regulations
  • Inadequate or incompetent crew

We will represent injured seamen on a contingency fee basis. Call Law Offices of Jan M. Weinberg for a FREE initial evaluation.

Passenger Injuries On Recreational Tours

Catamaran Accident

The beautiful islands of Hawaii offer a multitude of activities on the ocean, attracting thousands of tourists and residents. Unfortunately, accidents occur. If a vessel owner or operator’s negligence results in injuries to a passenger or to a non-passenger (for example, if a boat strikes a snorkeler), then maritime law applies.

Successful Cases

With more than 30 years of maritime law experience, we have achieved many successful results for passengers injured onboard catamarans, zodiacs and cruise vessels. We recently settled two cases involving passengers injured on the bow of one company’s catamaran in separate incidents. The cause of these incidents was the failure of the captains and crew to properly anticipate ocean conditions and to properly warn and protect the passengers from being injured.

  • In one case, a young woman was instructed to stand on the bow of a catamaran which soon entered heavy seas. She was thrown high off the deck and crashed down, suffering compound ankle fractures. Her settlement was $965,000.
  • In the second case, an older woman suffered a fractured ankle while standing on the bow of the catamaran when it navigated in an unsafe manner, causing her to be tossed off the deck. The second case was settled for $375,000.
  • In another case involving recreational boating, there was a 1 million dollar settlement for a 62- year-old man who suffered a back injury in a Zodiac vessel while whale-watching.

If you are injured on a recreational tour or while onboard a cruise ship, call 808-796-5706 to discuss your rights. Even if you have signed a release prior to your trip, under Hawaii law the tour provider cannot escape liability for negligence. Maritime law can also apply to jet skiers and snorkelers/scuba divers.

We are experienced in litigating maritime and Jones Act cases. Contact us for a FREE consultation.

We represent workers and passengers injured on:

  • Tugboats
  • Ships
  • Barges
  • Cruise boats

Recovering Compensation For Your Injuries Or Loss

Working on an oil refinery, barge, supply boat or ship can be dangerous work. However, it is the employer’s responsibility to provide a safe environment for workers. When representing clients in maritime injury claims, we focus on negligence of the employer or other parties which may have contributed to the serious accident. Such negligence may involve:

  • Inadequate safety equipment
  • Poor or unsafe work conditions
  • Inadequate training
  • Defective equipment

At the Law Offices of Jan M. Weinberg, we guide clients through the process of obtaining full compensation. We represent clients who have suffered serious injuries, such as spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, loss of a limb or other catastrophic injuries. We also handle wrongful death cases.

Contact An Experienced Maritime Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been injured at sea, consult an experienced lawyer who can guide you through this difficult time. Call the Law Offices of Jan M. Weinberg at 808-796-5706 or fill out this online form, and we will promptly respond to you. We will provide you with personal attention and guidance while vigorously pursuing maximum compensation on your behalf. We offer FREE initial case evaluations.