What to Know About the Jones Act Workers Compensation Rights

Maritime attorney

Workers compensation is one of the most important aspects of being a professional maritime laborer. In fact, the Jones Act workers compensation law provided the groundwork for a number of legislative bills that followed. If you want to learn more about workers compensation, consider these four facts or consult a local attorney for more information:

1. Implementing the Jones Act

Nearly a century ago, the United States passed the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, a federal statute that regulates the maritime commerce between U.S. ports and in U.S. waters. This was also known as the Jones Act and essentially laid out workers compensation regulations and standards for maritime workers. Seven years later, though, another law known as the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act was passed the fill in the gaps from the Jones Act workers compensation legislation.

2. The Defense Base Act completes the coverage

Then, in 1941, the Defense Base Act extended this Jones Act workers compensation coverage to even more longshore and harbor workers. As any DBA attorney can tell you, the act covers civilian employees who work outside of the U.S. on military bases or under contract with the federal government. The DBA provides longshore workers compensation to these individuals who are doing public works or working for national defense. Part of the stipulation with the DBA is that workers must immediately report their injury to a supervisor in order to qualify for the compensation.

3. Wage replacement and red tape

As with any federal government-provided aid, there is going to be a set series of regulations and qualifications a worker must follow in order to receive compensation. For example, wage loss compensation can provide a good source of income during the recovery time, though it will only provide a fraction. The current minimum wage replacement as per the DBA is arond $323.80.

4. Death benefits

If a worker faces a serious injury that results in death, this is a special case under the DBA. Funeral expenses up to $3,000 can be covered by the DBA Jones Act workers compensation. Family members will also continue to receive benefits based on the weekly rates of the deceased worker.

As you can see, the Jones Act workers compensation law and its successors have made progress to protect longshore and harbor workers and other laborers who deal in maritime claims. It is important to know all the facts so you know exactly what you and your family are entitled to. A great way to find more information about any of these acts is to contact a local DBA lawyer.

Leave a Reply