Alabama Maritime Attorneys

Billions Won by Maritime Accident Lawyers in Alabama

Offshore work has a long and proud history in Alabama. From oil rigs to fishing, Alabamians have ventured out over open water, significantly increasing the state’s economy. In fact, Alabama’s shrimp fishing industry netted $57 million in 2014, making it one of the state’s most valuable industries. Each day, these hardworking Americans face the dangers of working offshore to make an honest living—and the dangers they face are very real

Our Alabama maritime lawyers help workers hold their employers accountable for negligence. When people are injured offshore, they deserve protection for their family and their future. In most cases, that means providing for their medical care, replacing their lost wages, and ensuring they have enough to care for themselves if they cannot work. We help clients throughout the state of Alabama, including Mobile, Montgomery, Birmingham, Andalusia, Red Level, and more.

Speak with our Alabama offshore injury attorneys today. Call (888) 493-1629 or use our short online form to reach us.

Maritime Accidents

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Exposing Negligence & Wrongdoing by Maritime Employers

Maritime employers often cut corners to save on costs, neglecting essential maintenance and allowing vessels and equipment to deteriorate, significantly increasing the risk of accidents at sea. This lack of maintenance is a prevalent cause of injuries among Alabama offshore workers. Maritime law provides crucial protections for these workers, offering avenues for compensation for medical expenses and other hardships resulting from workplace injuries. Despite these protections, it is employers' fundamental responsibility to ensure their employees' safety on oil rigs and vessels.

Failure to maintain safe working conditions can lead to various hazardous incidents. Common types of offshore accidents include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Diving Accidents: These can occur due to faulty equipment or poor supervision.
  • Crane Failures: Cranes in disrepair can collapse or malfunction, causing severe injuries or fatalities.
  • Vessel Collisions: Negligence in navigation can lead to collisions with other ships or stationary objects.
  • Falls: Slippery decks, unsecured ladders, and other hazards can cause falls, leading to serious injuries.
  • Dangerous Equipment: Unmaintained or improperly handled machinery can fail and cause accidents.
  • Explosions: Ignition of flammable gases or liquids is especially dangerous in confined spaces.
  • Lift Accidents: Malfunctioning lift systems can drop suddenly, harming those inside or nearby.

When employers fail to uphold their duty of care, their negligence is directly responsible for any ensuing harm. It is imperative that such negligence is exposed and responsible parties are held accountable to prevent future incidents. At Arnold & Itkin, we are committed to advocating for the rights of maritime workers by pursuing justice against negligent employers, ensuring they face the consequences of their actions, and securing a safer workplace for all employees.

The Laws Protecting U.S. Offshore Workers

To address some of traditional maritime law's gaps and shortcomings, Congress has passed four major statutes in US history. These four statutes govern trade and workers’ rights on America’s waterways, between U.S. ports, and more.

These laws are the following:

The Jones Act

The Jones Act, also known as The Merchant Marine Act of 1920, was created to govern and support American sea trade. Since offshore work is often more dangerous than most industries, the Jones Act makes special provisions for the sake of maritime workers. One of its most essential stipulations is that vessel owners are responsible for their vessels' state and crew's safety. Most importantly, the Jones Act allows workers to file claims when injured due to employer negligence or unseaworthiness. This part of the law was created to offer relief to injured offshore workers and ensure they receive appropriate compensation for their losses. For workers who suffer serious injuries, Jones Act claims may be their only chance for a financially stable future.

Jones Act claims can include compensation for:

  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Disfigurement
  • Medical care
  • Loss of future earning capacity
  • Mental anguish
  • Cost of living during recovery

For offshore workers, the Jones Act works like workers’ compensation for land workers in that it provides relief when an employee is injured. There are two crucial differences, however. One, Jones Act claims tend to be worth more. Workers’ compensation covers only basic medical care and a portion of missing wages, but Jones Act claims cover far more. Two, Jones Act claims require claimants to prove negligence on the part of the employer. Workers’ compensation does not require anyone to be found at fault. The higher awards offered by the Jones Act also demand a higher burden of proof, which is why injured crews need Alabama Jones Act lawyers.

Under the Jones Act, you have a right to:

  • A reasonably safe work environment
  • Make a legal claim if injured as a result of negligence
  • Maintenance and cure related to the injury or illness
  • Additional compensation if the vessel or crew is deemed unseaworthy
  • Punitive damages if an employer refuses to pay maintenance and cure

The Longshore & Harbor Workers' Compensation Act

The offshore industry relies on longshoremen and harbor workers who use heavy equipment and complex machinery to keep our ports functioning. Because harbor work is often physical and filled with hazards, injuries in the industry are not uncommon. Often, workers suffer serious injuries after being exposed to harmful chemicals or because of equipment failure. In other instances, employers don’t provide the right tools, causing them to attempt work they should never handle unassisted.

The Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act (LHWCA) is a federal law that compensates workers injured in areas used for loading, unloading, building, and repairing vessels. Importantly, this law protects workers who are land-based as well as those who are on navigable waters within the United States.

Before the LHWCA, workers were subject to maritime laws that didn’t adequately compensate them for accidents caused by others' negligence. With the LHWCA, workers can secure compensation for all aspects of their injuries to reach full recovery. The LHWCA can help injured harbor workers and those in shipyards, offsite buildings, and repair areas. The LHWCA covers longshore workers and operators, harbor workers, shipbuilders, ship repairmen, ship breakers, and more.

Representing Victims of Boat Accidents in Alabama

The waters of Alabama’s Gulf Coast are utilized by thousands of people who operate boats commercially or recreationally. Alabama’s various lakes and rivers are popular with tourists and residents alike. Unfortunately, they can also be the scene of catastrophic boating accidents. When a boating accident occurs, it is nearly always a result of negligence and is preventable with proper safety practices. The Alabama boat accident attorneys at Arnold & Itkin are ready to help those involved in a boat accident. We have won verdicts and settlements worth billions.

Causes of Alabama Vessel Accidents

Boating While Intoxicated

The combination of alcohol and boating is lethal. Alcohol is considered the leading cause of boating fatalities nationally. Of all 658 fatalities in 2017, about 125 were directly attributed to alcohol.


It isn’t hard to obtain a boat license in Alabama. People were not even required to obtain a license for a long time. Today, the state requires boat operators to take a written test before being able to operate a boat. Notably, you can be as young as 12 and operate a boat. Unlike driver’s license tests, the test  does not require applicants to operate a boat.


Just as with a car on the road, the weather can change safety conditions on the water. Storms may cause rough waters, which means boats are liable to capsize or sink. 

False Sense of Security

Due to the wide open spaces on Alabama waters, it’s easy to feel safe in your boat. This false sense of security leads drivers to misunderstand their boat’s distance from other vessels. As boats are hard to stop, operators can fail to give an adequate amount of stopping distance as they approach other objects. While a lake may feel large and serene, it’s important to remember that this does not mean all is safe.

Our Alabama Offshore Injury Attorneys Fight for Results. No Matter What.

Lasting physical pain, mental trauma, and financial insecurity are things that no one should have to face alone. Unfortunately, that’s precisely what most injured workers are facing when they suffer an accident at sea. The Alabama maritime lawyers at Arnold & Itkin are dedicated to fighting for workers who have been unfairly injured. Our lawyers have a long history of results for maritime workers. We fought for over one-third of the crew of the Deepwater Horizon. Our team represented four families who lost their husbands in the sinking of the El Faro. All told, our firm has won billions.

If you've suffered during an offshore accident, our Alabama maritime law firm is ready to fight for your recovery!

Common Questions

  • What Are My Rights as a Maritime Worker?

    As a seaman, you have the right to a reasonably safe workplace, just like any worker. Maritime work is inherently dangerous, but this does not excuse overlooked safety standards, defective equipment, or acts of negligence that jeopardize your well-being. If you're injured at sea, you have the right to seek financial compensation for your medical treatment, lost earnings, and more. Because there are different maritime laws that apply to various types of workers and offshore injuries, we recommend discussing your case with an Alabama maritime lawyer as soon as possible. You can get the information you need to make the right choices.
  • What Workers Are Protected by Maritime Law?

    Virtually any maritime or offshore worker will be protected by some type of maritime law. Whether it is the Jones Act, the Death on the High Seas Act, or the LHWCA, injured workers have the right to seek compensation if they're injured at sea or on shore. Because these cases are complex and most fall under federal jurisdiction, it is crucial to involve a firm that has extensive experience in maritime law.
  • Is the LHWCA the Same as the Jones Act?

    No. While they have similar goals for the workers that they cover, the Jones Act and the Longshoremen and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Acts are not the same. They cover different sets of workers. The Jones Act covers maritime workers who contribute to the function or mission of a vessel. The LHWCA covers workers who do not directly aid the mission of a vessel but still work on or with them. It’s an important law that helps fill in the gaps of the Jones Act for harbor workers and other offshore professionals. Workers not covered by the LHWCA include seamen, intoxicated employees, workers covered under workers’ compensation, and government employees.
  • How Much Does Hiring an Alabama Maritime Attorney Cost?

    Hiring an Alabama maritime injury lawyer from Arnold & Itkin costs nothing up front. We work on something called a contingency fee. This means we cover all costs associated with a case and only collect a payment if we secure results. Working this way makes services our record-setting law firm attainable for anyone.
  • What Do You Do to Prove Fault in a Boat Accident?

    Proving fault in a boat accident will require an investigation into what caused the collision. Most of the time, this is a boat operator who is inexperienced, negligent, or under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. In other cases, boat and other watercraft accidents are caused by defective products, such as faulty boat engines or other parts and systems. Extreme weather can also cause serious accidents. By reviewing the physical evidence, talking to witnesses, and working with accident reconstruction specialists to put it all together, our Alabama boat accident lawyers can determine what caused your collision and therefore who should be held responsible for your medical care and other losses you’ve experienced. A successful case will give you the invaluable opportunity to rebuild.
  • What Compensation Am I Entitled to After a Boating Accident in Alabama?

    A person who has been injured in a boating accident in Alabama may be entitled to economic and non-economic damages. This financial compensation is meant to help a victim of negligence or wrongdoing rebuild their lives to as similar a situation as they were in before the accident. The following economic damages may be available in a boat accident claim: medical treatment; ongoing medical care; physical therapy; medication and medical supplies; travel expenses to and from appointments; lost earnings; loss of future/potential earnings; property damage. Non-economic damages may include mental anguish, pain and suffering, and more. Every case is different, so it is important to discuss yours with a qualified attorney. During your free consultation, we can talk to you about what your case might be worth and how to secure the compensation you need.

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