Working as a crew member can be a dangerous job. For centuries, seafaring was considered one of the most dangerous professions in the world, and crew members still suffer severe, catastrophic injuries and fatalities as a result of their work at sea.
Some shipowners have historically tried to take advantage of injured crew members, seeking to avoid paying wages, firing them for bringing a claim, not providing proper medical care, and not paying fair compensation when crew members are injured in the line of duty.
The laws of the United States are designed to protect crew members from abusive employment practices. Under federal general maritime law, seamen are regarded as wards of the court and must be treated by shipowner-employers as they would treat children. United States maritime laws are among the most robust in the world.
Our maritime trial lawyers are based in Miami—home of many shipping and charter companies and in close proximity to two of Florida’s busiest ports, Port Miami and Port Everglades. We specialize in handling crew member matters. We have handled maritime-work cases worldwide, in countries such as Panama, the Philippines, Monaco, France, and the United Kingdom.
Crew members need protection, and they need attorneys experienced in handling crew member claims to protect their rights, secure their well-being, ensure employers treat them fairly, and to help them enforce the laws of the United States and elsewhere. Mase Seitz Briggs does that.
Our experienced maritime attorneys have handled maritime lawsuits around the globe. We can help you if you or a loved one was injured as a crew member.
Under United States law, a shipowner must pay a seaman all wages in full at the end of a voyage unless the parties have agreed to other payment terms in writing.
Failure to pay as required may subject the shipowner or maritime employer to a penalty of two days’ wages for each day payment is delayed. If a shipowner establishes sufficient cause for failure to pay, then no penalty wages are owed.
If you have worked as a crew member and not been paid what you are owed for your work, you may be entitled to recover not only your wages but also two days’ penalty wages for each day of nonpayment. Mase Seitz Briggs has broad experience handling wage claims, and our maritime trial attorneys in Miami, Florida, can help you determine whether you are owed wages and, if so, whether you are also entitled to penalty wages and other damages for nonpayment.
Under U.S. law, a seaman injured on the job has the right to bring a claim against his or her employer for personal injury suffered during the course of their employment.
It is unlawful for a shipowner or maritime employer to blacklist or otherwise retaliate against a crew member for making a personal injury claim, including threatening to terminate them. Doing so subjects maritime employers to a separate and independent claim for retaliatory discharge or blacklisting. Compensatory and punitive damages are recoverable if such a claim is proven.
Mase Seitz Briggs has decades of experience specializing in maritime law and handling crew member cases and claims. We know how to get you the compensation you deserve.
If you are a crew member and have suffered an injury, have not been paid what you are owed, or have otherwise not been treated properly, call us today for a free consultation.