With its prime location near the Gulf Coast and its stronghold on the nation's energy industry, Houston is home to thousands of workers in the oil and gas and offshore sectors. Because these are some of the most dangerous jobs in the U.S., there are unique laws and regulations in place to keep workers safe. The Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act (LHWCA), for example, is a piece of legislation that ensures fair compensation for workers who suffer maritime and offshore injuries.
Who Is Covered By the LHWCA?
The LHWCA, also known as the Longshore Act, is a workers' compensation program in place specifically for workers in the maritime industry and for many workers not covered by the Jones Act. Under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, compensation – including medical benefits and wage supplementation – is available to:
- Workers injured in navigable waters of the United States; or
- Workers injured in adjoining areas used for loading, unloading, repairing, or building certain vessels.
- Workers employed in maritime occupations, including longshoremen and others who engage in longshore operations.
- Harbor and dock workers.
The LHWCA does exclude certain workers – particularly those who are employed by the U.S. government or any other state or foreign government. Employees who are covered by a state workers' compensation law may also be excluded. A Houston personal injury lawyer at our firm can help you determine if you are eligible for compensation under the LHWCA.
What Compensation Is Available Under the Longshore Act?
Eligible injured workers covered by the LHWCA may receive compensation for:
- Two-thirds of average weekly wages, subject to weekly maximum and minimum limits, for as long as the effects of a work-related injury or illness persist.
- Compensation for permanent impairments and disabilities.
- Death benefits to a surviving spouse (50 percent of average weekly wage) and/or surviving children.
- All reasonable and required medical expenses and vocational rehabilitation.
More information about current benefit rates under the LHWCA can be found on the Office of Workers' Compensation Programs (OWCP) official website. You can also contact the Daspit Law Firm to discuss your case with an attorney.
Discuss Your Claim with a Houston Personal Injury Lawyer
Whatever your particular case may entail, it is crucial for you to understand that you have rights. By working with a seasoned injury attorney in Houston, like John Daspit, you can ensure that you fully understand these rights and that you have the support you need as you navigate the claim process. If you would like more information about filing a claim under the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, please do not hesitate to call (713) 364-0915 or request a free case evaluation today.