Guidance After an Injury: The Advance on Wages


The more a seaman knows about their rights and remedies in the event of an injury, the easier it is for them to successfully recover damages they are rightfully owed. However, maritime employers have many tactics to use thanks to the high-powered legal advice they receive from their attorneys. Learn more about the advance on wages.

An Advance on Wages as a Common Employers’ Tactic 

When a seaman gets injured, vessel employers and their insurers turn to their powerful maritime attorney’s advice. They may additionally hire an adjuster to assist with the crewmember’s personal injury claim. One of the steps the employer or the adjuster on the employer’s behalf may take is to offer you what is called an advance on wages.

The advance on wages is a monthly payment in addition to maintenance and cure benefits. It may sound like much needed extra financial help, but there is a hidden agenda. Typically, it would be just two-thirds of what the seaman earns normally. Let’s have a second look at why the employer and its adjuster are making such a generous offer.

The Hidden Agenda Behind the Advance on Wages

Usually, the adjuster is pursuing two main goals, when they offer the advance on wages to an injured crewmember. They use this strategy to:

  1. Try to control you by keeping you happy.
  2. Make you sign a forum selection agreement if you don’t settle.

The goal is to reduce your financial stress in order to prevent you from consulting with a maritime attorney, who can tell you the real value of your case. In this way, the adjuster can easily entice an unknowing crewmember into settling the personal injury claim at an amount that is far below what he should receive. By talking to a personal injury lawyer, seamen can get a fair estimation of their actual damages and compensation.

Again, before you have had the chance to consult with a maritime attorney, the adjuster will try to get you to sign a forum selection agreement in order to control the venue where you file your lawsuit. Learn more details about the forum selection agreements.