Tampa Longshoreman Injury Lawyer
The job of a longshoreman is grueling and hazardous, with risks of injury all around. Loading and unloading cargo, operating cranes, driving heavy machinery, and other tasks are extremely treacherous. However, this line of work is even more dangerous when you must do it on uneven, unsteady surfaces like ships and docks. If you are injured, you do have the right to recover certain benefits, but these matters are very different from the claim you might have under Florida’s workers’ compensation laws. The statutes that apply to your situation are also distinct from the claims of crew members at sea, who are covered by the federal Jones Act.
At Barbas Nuñez Sanders Butler & Hovsepian, our Tampa workers’ compensation lawyers have more than six decades of experience representing employees who are hurt in workplace incidents, including longshoremen. Our lawyers can tell you more about how federal law protects you and offers significant benefits to provide support as you recover, so please contact our office at 813-279-2686 to set up a free consultation. We serve clients in Hillsborough County and throughout the Tampa Bay region, and we can help you, too.
Overview of the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
The federal Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) is intended to protect longshoremen and other employees who work upon US waters, as well as the adjoining areas customarily used in the loading, unloading, repairing, or construction of a vessel. The LHWCA fills in the void where Florida’s workers’ compensation system and the Jones Act do not apply. It requires employers to carry insurance coverage to pay benefits to workers who are injured in workplace incidents or contract illnesses due to the work environment.
Some of the most common injuries, illnesses, and medical conditions longshoremen sustain are caused by:
- Electrical and chemical fires due to defective equipment;
- Explosions resulting from hazardous cargo;
- Extreme weather conditions, including the heat, humidity, and storms that are frequent in Florida;
- Falling objects and loads, which can strike or crush longshoremen;
- Malfunctioning equipment, such as cranes, trucks, forklifts, and other vehicles;
- Slippery surfaces; and,
- Many other factors.
Protecting Your Rights Under the LHWCA
Under the LHWCA, longshoremen who suffer illness or injury can recover benefits for:
- Medical care, including current and future surgery, procedures, therapy, and related care;
- Partial or total disability; and,
- Vocational rehabilitation, which provides counseling, retraining, and related services if you are no longer able to work as a longshoreman.
Keep in mind that filing a claim through the LHWCA is your sole remedy for the injuries you sustain. Like Florida’s workers’ compensation laws, you cannot file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer to recover losses and pain and suffering. There are certain exceptions, such as where your employer neglects to carry insurance or engages in intentional conduct that results in bodily harm.
Schedule an Appointment with a Longshoreman Injuries Lawyer in Tampa Today
If you would like to hear more about your rights as an injured longshoreman under the LHWCA, please contact Barbas Nuñez Sanders Butler & Hovsepian by calling 813-279-2686 or visiting our website to Our attorneys can set up a free consultation to review your circumstances and explain your legal remedies.