Crewmembers are entitled to a per diem living allowance (a/k/a “maintenance”), medical care and costs associated therewith (a/k/a “cure”) and substitute wages (a/k/a “sick wages”) any time a crew member suffers an injury, accident or illness while “subject to the call of the vessel.” Having previously represented cruise ship companies, ship & vessel operators, and yacht owners for 19 years, the board certified maritime attorneys at the law firm of Brais Law Firm are in a unique position to protect crew members whose marine employer is not paying maintenance and cure benefits following a shipboard injury, accident or illness. The lawyers at the law firm of Brais Law Firm with offices in Miami, Florida and Boston, Massachusetts are here to help crew members and seaman who, after having suffered an injury, accident or illness and are not receiving their maintenance and cure benefits.
The duty of ship owners to provide maintenance and cure benefits for the crew members and seamen working for them in time of injury or illness is hundreds of years old. Maintenance and cure is a remedy dependent upon Jones Act seaman status. “Maintenance” is the daily allowance intended to provide ill or injured crew member and seamen lodging and food while convalescing. “Cure” is medical expenses necessary to treat ill or injured seamen and transportation to and from doctors’ offices. Sick wages is simply the amount of wages a seaman would receive if s/he was well enough to continue working for the remainder of the voyage or contract period.
The obligation to pay maintenance, cure, and sick wages arise when a seaman becomes ill or is injured regardless of any negligence or fault on the part of the marine employer or ship owner/operator. The illness need not arise out of the seaman’s occupation and, thus, can arise out of a medical condition such as a heart problem, a prior illness that resurfaces during a seaman’s employment or, in certain circumstances, an injury suffered on shore.
The attorneys at the law firm of Brais Law Firm have the experience to protect your rights, the compassion to serve your needs, and the skill to obtain the compensation you deserve. To reach our lawyers you may click email the firm, call 800-499-0551 from within the U.S., Skype BraisLaw worldwide or click Contact Us to select and complete a form for a free evaluation of your case.
- Ship’s Medical Negligence: Respondeat Superior or Strict Liability; Presented by Keith S. Brais, Esq., at the International Council of Cruise Lines 2006 Legal & Insurance Seminar, in Washington, D.C.