Jones Act Lawsuit | Uplift Legal Funding

Jones Act lawsuits can be worth millions - read this guide to learn more

The Jones Act, also referred to as the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, was established to protect workers at sea. Seamen are not entitled to workers’ compensation benefits (unlike land-based workers), which is why the Jones Act is crucial for their protection. This act and general maritime law allows seamen to sue their employer for negligence. It is important to note, however, that this act is very particular about who qualifies as a seaman. To qualify for a Jones Act lawsuit, you must work as at least a part-time seaman (a worker who spends at least 30% of work time on a vessel).

Read this blog to learn more about a Jones Act Lawsuit and potential settlement.

Jones Act Lawsuits And Burden of Causation

Unlike standard negligence cases, Jones Act lawsuits only need to show that an employers negligence played some (even minor) role in the incident. This is in stark contrast to standard negligence in which partial plaintiff negligence can have an effect on the case.

Examples of hazardous maritime work conditions include:

  • Slippery deck – generally caused by grease or oil on the deck, slip and falls often result in brain and/ or spinal injury or broken bones.
  • Ill-functioning equipment – maritime jobs often use cranes and other heavy-lifting equipment, increasing the danger for employees.
  • Improper or lack of training – lack of proper training can prove fatal for seamen. In fact, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 1 in 1,000 maritime crane operators will suffer a fatal injury on the job due to an operator error.
  • Lack of access to essential equipment – lack of access to essential equipment can make dangerous conditions even worse.

Like other personal injury claims, plaintiffs must present evidence of negligence. However, the burden of proof is much lower in Jones Act lawsuits due to the hazardous nature of seamen’s jobs.

How Much is My Jones Act Lawsuit Worth?

The more assessed damages, the higher chance of a larger settlement for the plaintiff. In valuable cases, the plaintiff has most likely endured significant injury and loss, amounting to higher damages. Like most other personal injury cases, the following types of damages help determine case value:

  • Lost wages from injury
  • Medical treatment to-date
  • Estimated future medical costs of injury
  • Pain and suffering of the plaintiff and his or her family

Unfortunately, while Jones Act lawsuits have high dollar-values, the plaintiff is often left with a large burden before settlement. To make a stressful situation even worse, Jones Act lawsuits can be quite lengthy. Lawyers must obtain adequate witness statements and potentially expert reports, conduct maritime machinery research and provide valid proof of negligence. Oftentimes, the defendant will purposefully draw out a case, which pressures the plaintiff to settle for a lower amount.

Jones Act Lawsuit Loans

Are you or a loved one the victim of a maritime accident? Valid Jones Act lawsuits will most likely work out in your favor. However, lawsuits can take several years.

Uplift Legal Funding can provide Jones Act lawsuit loans in as little as 24 hours. Legal funding can help cover your medical costs, lost wages and other life expenses so that you can negotiate a higher settlement. Best of all, if you do not win the case, you do not owe us anything! Apply online or give us a call at (800) 385-3660.