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Guidance After an Injury: Seamen's Goals vs. Vessel Employers' Goals


Seamen should be well prepared for what follows after a personal injury. What steps do maritime workers need to take immediately after the incident to protect their interests? Learn how to avoid letting your employer get off to a flying start in minimizing your claim. 

Seaman’s Goals Following a Personal Injury

For seamen, it is essential to know their rights and remedies. Not only that, but they should also learn how to protect their claims after being injured. This is crucial for receiving the compensation you deserve. Three of the most important actions for vessel crewmembers are:

  1. Report the injury immediately;
  2. Request prompt medical treatment; and
  3. Do not continue working after their personal injury.

Many maritime workers fail to take these steps. However, skipping documentation or proper medical care becomes critical at a later stage. 

I have heard countless times that the reason some seamen do not report a personal injury is the fear of losing their jobs over it. Requesting medical treatment is similarly important because if you continue to work through the pain in fear of losing your job, your employer will contend that you were not injured since you were able to do your work duties.

Vessel Employers’ Goals to Avoid Liability In Personal Injury Cases

Vessel operators who run a bad loss history face the risk of losing jobs from their customers. This means that too many personal injuries happened to seamen working for them. It is not in the operator’s interest to add more injured crewmembers to the workplace injury statistics. Maritime employers will try to avoid that by any means.

Failure to timely report injuries operates in the vessel employer’s favor. Both the employer and their maritime defense attorneys will criticize the seaman on this basis. They will attempt to cast doubt on whether the accident even occurred. 

The legal advice vessel employers receive can help them dispute the injury. If the seaman continued to work, they will contend that it is evident that no personal injury prevented him from doing his work duties.   

How Can a Seaman Protect Their Claim

As you see, maritime employers use strong legal advice to defeat seamen’s personal injury claims. Seamen can also protect their claims by consulting with an experienced maritime personal injury attorney. Also, make sure you do not omit any important steps after the accident, giving the vessel operator an unfair advantage.

Remember: You must report and document your personal injury immediately. Request medical treatment and do not continue working after your injury.

What else can you do to protect your personal injury claim? Learn about other strategies and tips that can help you after the accident.