As a seaman, you have the right to benefits in the Seamen’s Act. Suppose you suffer injuries while on duty; you are entitled to Maintenance and Cure compensation. Maintenance refers to a weekly stipend a seafarer receives after suffering injuries while in line of duty to cater for their daily upkeep. On the other hand, Cure refers to payments you receive to cover your medical expenses. Here are tips to help you secure your Maintenance and Cure compensation with ease.
- Hire An Experienced Maintenance and Cure Lawyer
As a seaman, you have legal rights to secure Maintenance and Cure benefits when working at sea. It’s also essential to know that a wrong lawyer selection would cost you time, money, and even your legal entitlement. Hiring a Maintenance and Cure lawyer will be your best bet when it comes to getting the right results.
It is imperative to hire a New York maritime injury lawyer who will deal with the welfare of your condition as you progress and get cured. Finding a Maintenance and Cure attorney to represent you in your compensation claim case helps you avoid any additional hardship when securing your benefits as the law requires.
- Keep Your Records Straight and Register With Coast Guard
Staying organized is essential to ensure that you receive all of the benefits you deserve. Keeping proper records will be necessary to secure maintenance and cure benefits. So if you want to be able to get complete maintenance and cure benefits, you have to have evidence to back up your claims. The first tip to playing your cards right is, keeping proper records.
It’s not just all about medical records but also making accurate records of a sailor’s logbook to keep track of your sea service. Additionally, registering with the Coast Guard will be easy for you and your dependents to get all available benefits related to your service and injuries.
- Inform The Workers Union If You Are A Member
If you are a union member, it’s essential to notify them about your injuries and file a report with the union. The seamen workers union can then communicate with you about any more information it needs from the steamship company. The sea workers’ unions play a vital role during the Maintenance and Cure compensation.
Unions usually have a Collective Bargaining Agreement, CBA, concerning the compensation rates in case of injuries to their union members. Be honest with your employer, but also make sure that you remain open with your workers’ union so that it is clear what benefits you should be getting and how much money will be going to the worker’s union.
- Make An Appeal If Authorities Denies Your Claim
When your employer or court denies your claim for maintenance and cure benefits, it is essential to understand every appeal possibility that you have. If you have lost your appeal with a local judge, you must file an appeal within 30 days, even though the law allows 60 days.
The most common reasons for appeals becoming successful revolve around the failure to send notice to the other party, claims of error in procedure such as not receiving notification of motion, or a previous decision is arrived at without authority. However, it’s essential to hire a maintenance and cure lawyer to help you make your claim successfully.
- File Your Maintenance And Cure At The Right Time
If you are on a seaman’s contract, you are entitled to the shipowner’s maintenance and cure benefits. The entitlement for compensation occurs immediately after you suffer injuries or sickness while on duty. However, it’s essential to file your claim for compensation on time.
The first thing to do is pay attention to when you become eligible for maintenance and cure benefits. A seaman’s right to these benefits begins on the day that medical treatment was necessary, including the day of hospitalization. Once a seaman makes it beyond the 5th day after being discharged from a hospital, they need to apply for maintenance and cure benefits within 180 days of the discharge date. If you miss this deadline, you may lose your right to claim maintenance and cure benefits.
When protecting your rights as a seaman, you need to know what rights you have and when you can exercise them. Whether Maintenance and Cure benefits are available will depend on your injury or illness circumstances. The best thing for you to do is to check with a maritime attorney specializing in Maintenance and Cure Compensation to advise you on your options.