Crew Member Falls Overboard on Carnival Cruise
The Coast Guard announced that it was suspending a search for a Carnival Cruise crew member who fell overboard in early July. The Coast Guard reported that it searched over 2,600 square miles for the body of Gaffar Sitwilkar who is the father of three children. The news came as a terrible revelation to family members who hoped to at least recover the man’s body for a proper burial.
According to details and investigation, the man could not be found and the cruise ship immediately returned to the area where he had last been seen to conduct a rescue mission. The man, however, could not be found.
The ship is said to have been traveling from Cozumel to Miami and the man is believed to have fallen off the ship somewhere around Cuba.
Death Benefits in Maritime Cases
Work on the high seas is often dangerous. Workers, however, are entitled to a fairly generous benefits package in the case of severe injury or death. Since many maritime cases involve off-shore drilling and oil rigs, these claims are not uncommon. The laws that protect Maritime workers in workers’ compensation cases also cover their dependents.
The Jones Act and DOSHA is the law when it comes to workers’ compensation and maritime injuries. These benefits cover a broad array of circumstances. Employers are expected to provide on-the-job medical care and when an employee is injured, food, shelter and more. In cases where an employee is injured on the job, they can either file a claim against their employer’s workers’ compensation policy or a Jones Act claim which is a lawsuit alleging negligence. This runs contrary to land workers who can only file a claim against a workers’ compensation policy.
Depending on the details of an individual’s injury or death, it may benefit a worker to file a workers’ compensation claim or a Jones Act claim. Those who file Jones Act claims can recover more money for a wider array of damages including pain and suffering.
In addition to the Jones Act, a seaman and their family can file claims under DOSHA (Death on the High Seas Act). DOSHA is a bit of a mixed blessing because, not only must the seaman’s family prove negligence, but they are not entitled to so-called “noneconomic damages” such as pain and suffering, grief, or loss of companionship.
What to Do After Losing a Loved One in a Maritime Accident
Your first order of business would be to contact an attorney. If you’re loved one was killed due to an act of negligence by their employer, you will have some options available to you as to how to proceed. An attorney can help you file a claim and secure the evidence you need to prove it in a court of law.
Talk to a Miami Maritime and Admiralty Attorney Today
If you need to file a claim under the Jones Act or DOSHA, talk to a Miami admiralty & maritime lawyer at the office of Michael F. Guilford, P.A. We can help.