The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) is a federal law that provides compensation and medical care to employees who are injured or who contract occupational disease while working on the navigable waters of the United States and adjoining areas.
Compensation benefits are paid by authorized self-insured employers or through authorized insurance carriers. In particular circumstances, benefits may be paid by a special fund administered directly by the Division of Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation within the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).
Who is Protected Under the LHWCA?
The LHWCA covers workers employed in maritime occupations, including longshore workers or other persons in longshore operations, and any harbor workers, including ship repairers, shipbuilders, and shipbreakers. The Act excludes the following individuals if they are covered by a state workers’ compensation law: office employees, certain retail and service employees, small vessel workers and individuals engaged in repairing certain recreational vessels, and masters or members of a crew of any vessel.
What are my Employee Rights Under the LHWCA?
It is important to consult with an attorney immediately after you are injured on the job in order to preserve your rights and to avoid missing legal deadlines. Under the LHWCA, there are specific steps and time limits for you to do certain things after you are injured, and your attorney can help you accomplish these things within those limits.
The LHWCA requires your employer or its insurance carrier to furnish all medical and surgical costs related to the injury. If an employee is unable to work as a result of the injury and loses pay, the employee is also entitled to compensation for pay loss at the rate of 2/3rds of his or her average weekly wage. The first payment of compensation is due 14 days after your employer has knowledge of the injury and is to be paid every two weeks during the continuance of the disability. Additionally, an injured employee may choose his or her own treating physician.
Your attorney can help you determine if you are entitled to additional benefits and will discuss settlement values of your claim and compensation rates under the Act.
Are You an Injured Maritime Worker?
If you’re an injured maritime worker, chances are that you have several questions about your situation, and you need answers. It is important that you know your rights under the LHWCA. The LHCWA Attorneys at The Lambert Firm can answer your questions and help you receive maximum compensation. Contact the attorneys at The Lambert Firm here or call 1-800-521-1750.