All mariners who fall sick or are injured while in the service of a vessel are entitled to maintenance and cure benefits no matter who’s at fault. Maintenance and cure is a right found under the general maritime law and is one of the oldest rights given to mariners.
Employers are required by law to pay you a daily maintenance rate and all your medical expenses until you are found to be at Maximum Medical Improvement (“MMI”). This means that your employer’s responsibility to pay maintenance may entitle you to the money to pay for your mortgage, rent, utilities and other expenses. As a part of your employer’s responsibility to pay for cure, most if not all of your medical expenses should be paid for or reimbursed. This includes treatment, prescriptions, and transportation to and from appointments.
Don’t allow your employer to rush your medical treatment. Sometimes their interests are not aligned with yours. Your employer may use company doctors who will push you to admit you're healed when really you are not. Remember, as soon as you reach MMI your employer will cut off your benefits and is no longer responsible to pay for any medical treatment or expenses. MMI should only be determined by unbiased medical professionals.
If you or a loved one have been injured or fallen ill aboard a vessel make sure you have an experienced maritime attorney who knows how to handle maintenance and cure claims. Leeward Law has experience handling maintenance and cure claims to a satisfactory solution.
Contact a maritime attorney at Leeward Law today for a free consultation. There is no obligation and consultations are confidential. Leeward Law is here to help.