All Types of Workers, whether on Land or on the Sea are Entitled to Receive Compensation due to Work-related Injuries

All Types of Workers, whether on Land or on the Sea are Entitled to Receive Compensation due to Work-related Injuries

Jul 09
All Types of Workers, whether on Land or on the Sea are Entitled to Receive Compensation due to Work-related Injuries

For all those whose work is their main source of livelihood, any type of work-related injury or occupational disease that will incapacitate them will definitely result to crippling financial consequences that can worsen their life situation as well as that of his/her family. The problem with injury is, just when wages have been cut due to inability to report to work, the staggering medical bills come in. This is what makes many injured workers forgo medical care; however, forgoing medical treatment can result to longer recovery period, extending, likewise, the days of inability to return to work.

Workers’ Compensation Benefit Program, which was passed into law starting in 1908 proved to be a major help for workers who figured in accidents while performing their job or who developed any disease due to daily exposure to, or contact with, hazardous substances in the workplace. This state-mandated benefit, which is in the form of an insurance program, was established to provide sure and immediate wage replacement and medical benefits; it was also designed to cover disability, vocational rehabilitation and death.

The many fraudulent claims in the past, however, have led to strict evaluation of claims applications, resulting to denied claims even if the mistakes were simply technical in nature, such as a missing signature or a missed box.

If you are eligible for workers’ compensation, you may receive benefits for:

  • Medical – medical expenses and future health care costs are covered by your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance;
  • Temporary disability – typically you may receive 70 percent of the wages or salary you were earning before your injury, up to a limit set by New Jersey statute; and/or,
  • Permanent disability – benefits for permanent injuries are based on a formula for determining the percentage of your disabilities

By availing of Workers’ Compensation benefits, though, an injured worker would be relinquishing his/her right to file a tort suit against his/her employer to further seek compensation. This is because Workers’ Comp was established as a trade-off: receive the benefits, but give up your right to sue your employer. However, an injured worker may rather decide not to avail of the benefits for the right to pursue legal action against his/her employer. This is the path taken by those who are confident that they can prove that the accident was intended by their employer, that the employer does not carry Workers’ Comp or, that the injury is too severe or leads to death, so that the amount of benefits offered does not fully cover the damages suffered.

As further explained by the Todd J. Leonard Law Firm, “If you were injured by an individual or entity other than your employer while performing the duties of your job, you may be able to obtain additional compensation through a third-party claim.”

It is not terribly uncommon for job-related injuries to have a third party that is also responsible for the injuries. In these circumstances, you can file an additional claim or lawsuit against the other party or company that caused your injuries and/or disabilities, as well as continue your claim against your employer. In these claims, you can also receive monies for pain and suffering and other losses sustained that are not recoverable under the Workers’ Compensation Act.

Also entitled to receive compensation due to work-related injuries are those categorized as seamen; however, their compensation is to be paid not by the Workers’ Compensation Benefit Program, but by the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, more commonly known as the Jones Act.

The Jones Act is a federal statute that protects seamen who get injured on the job, specifically by giving them the right to sue their employer for personal injury or negligence damages. It also requires maritime employers to:

  • Provide seamen with a reasonably safe place to work; and,
  • Use ordinary care, under any circumstances, to keep and maintain the vessel, on which a seaman works, in a reasonably safe condition. Any unsafe condition on a vessel can lead to liability under the Jones Act and, in the event of injury, an injured seaman needs only to prove that his/her employer’s negligence was a contributory factor to the events that resulted to his/her injuries in order for him/her to recover damages against his/her Jones Act-covered employer.


As more clearly explained by Jones Act attorneys, “First and foremost, injured workers can collect immediate compensation for what is termed to be their “maintenance and cure,” regardless of who will eventually be held liable for the accident. Compensation for an injured worker’s “maintenance” refers to money that is paid to cover the cost of room and board that would normally have been provided to the injured worker if he or she was still on the job. These funds usually cover necessary household expenses like mortgage and rent payments, utilities, taxes, and other necessary expenses.

The “cure” portion of an injured worker’s compensation refers to the amount that will go toward medical and rehabilitative care until he or she is able to make as complete a medical recovery as possible. Additionally, employers will be expected to cover the cost of their injured employee’s transportation to and from medical facilities, along with the wages that the injured worker would have been paid until his or her voyage was complete.”

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