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Longshore & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act Lawyers

Houston LHWCA Attorneys Serving Workers in Texas, Louisiana & Across the U.S.

The Longshore & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) is a federal law that grants workers’ compensation for wounded employees who work in the areas used for loading, unloading, crafting, and repairing a sea vessel. The LHWCA also covers workers who work on navigable waters within the U.S. The act ensures that employers (or insurance companies covering an employer) properly compensate an injured worker when a work-related injury requires medical care, vocational rehabilitation, or missed work days. The LHWCA also covers survivor benefits.

Who Is Covered by the LHWCA?

The LHWCA covers numerous offshore and maritime occupations including:

For an employee to be covered by the LHWCA, he or she must be injured in a location outlined under the list mentioned above. A non-traditional employee may be covered under the LHWCA if they are injured on navigable waters.

Who Is Covered Under LHWCA Extensions?

Here is a list of LHWCA extensions and their outlined beneficiaries as defined under LHWCA extension:

  • Defense Base Act (DBA): Covers a plethora of private and personal workers who are employed on a defense base. Some of these workers include private employees working on U.S. military bases or on any lands outside of America where the U.S. military is residing; and contractor employees who are either: running a public work contract with an American government agency anywhere outside of the United States, or selling military goods or services to U.S. allies. Another covered employee under the DBA is a maritime operative who is working under an American employer and providing welfare or other social services for the benefit of the Armed Services.
  • Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA): This extension of the LHWCA covers employees who work on the Outer Continental Shelf of the United States in the examination and advancement of natural resources, such as offshore drilling employees.
  • Non-Appropriated Fund Instrumentalities Act (NAFIA): This extension covers employees who work as nonappropriated fund instrumentalities of the Armed Forces (for example, workers who help shape the confidence, wellbeing, and satisfaction of Armed Forces personnel). A worker who falls under this category could be a counselor, a motivational speaker, or another civilian worker.

Who Is Excluded from the LHWCA?

  • Seaman
  • Government employees
  • Intoxicated employees
  • Employees who harm themselves
  • Various workers covered under state workers’ compensation law

How Does the Jones Act Differ from the LHWCA?

The Jones Act and the LHWCA accomplish the same goal: workers’ compensation for a group of workers. However, the outlined group of employees differ between the two acts. Under the LHWCA, maritime workers who do not “directly aid in the function or mission of a sea vessel” are covered. The Jones Act covers employees who “directly aid in the function or mission of a sea vessel.”

Who Upholds the LHWCA?

The Office of Worker’s Compensation Programs (OWCP) carries out declarations of workers’ compensation cases among employees covered by the LHWCA. In a scenario where a claim is denied; an LHWCA attorney who tries cases, such as our team, can help a claimant seek compensation.

Am I Automatically Covered by the LHWCA as a Maritime Employee?

While you will be covered by the LHWCA automatically as an employee that meets the LHWCA requirements for coverage, you are not guaranteed compensation under the LHWCA. If you sustain an injury while working in LHWCA conditions, you will have to file with the OWCP. OWCP can deny your claim, or your employer can contest it. For these reasons, it is important that you have an LHWCA law firm behind you should your claim be denied.

Arnold & Itkin's maritime attorneys are some of the best in the business. Our legal team has recovered billions for their clients and holds record-setting verdicts and settlements for maritime employees. The LHWCA does not grant automatic compensation, but we can help. If you have any questions about the LHWCA or need help with your LHWCA, call our firm!

Call (888) 493-1629 to talk to our attorneys about the LHWCA and your potential claim.

Case Results

Check Out Our Victories

  • $29Million The Largest Known Settlement for a Wrongful Death Offshore Kurt Arnold, Jason Itkin, and Cory Itkin successfully secured a record settlement for a single family who tragically lost a loved one. It is the largest known settlement for a death that occurred offshore. While a settlement is not an admittance of responsibility, our firm was pleased that the company was willing to provide fair compensation to the family of their employee without a fight.
  • $14Million Jones Act Settlement Reached Two Days Before Trial Arnold & Itkin represented a seaman after he suffered a head injury on the Hercules 15 inland barge. Hercules employees tack welded a three foot pipe to the derrick and then forgot to remove it before starting drilling operations. The pipe was jarred loose and hit Plaintiff in the head, causing severe injury. We presented his case under the Jones Act against Hercules, who chose to settle just before trial.
  • $11.5Million Settlement Won for Injured Victim of Offshore Accident Arnold & Itkin obtained a settlement of $11.5 million on behalf of an offshore accident victim suffering from both physical and psychological injuries. His settlement will ensure that our client gets all the time, financial support, and stability he needs to fully recover and get back on his feet.
  • $8.9Million Settlement Achieved for Severely Injured Seaman Arnold & Itkin helped secure a settlement on behalf of a seaman who injured his head when working aboard an offshore drilling vessel. Our firm helped to recover $8.9 million on his behalf.
  • $8Million Massive Settlement Reached Before Trial Began Our firm represented an offshore worker (a steward) who seriously injured his back in an accident. The injury prevented him from making a living. While other lawyers told him his case was only worth a few hundred thousand dollars, our attorneys knew better. Due to intense negotiations by the firm, Arnold & Itkin was able to obtain a settlement for $8 million from his employers.
  • $7.2Million Millions Won for Brain-Injured Client in Louisiana Arnold & Itkin recovered more than $7 million in a settlement for a severely injured Louisiana client. Our client suffered brain injury and memory issues while working on an offshore platform. The defendant settled his case during jury selection, and our client now has the money he needs to receive quality medical care for the rest of his life.
  • $7.1Million Concussed Worker Received a Massive Settlement after Accident Arnold & Itkin represented an offshore worker with a concussion and a herniated disk from an accident on the job. These injuries inhibited our client’s ability to make a living, requiring him to pursue a claim. His employers eventually resolved the case by settling for $7.1 million.
  • $6.9Million Settlement Obtained for Family of Deceased Offshore Worker Arnold & Itkin negotiated a multi-million dollar settlement for the family of a man who died offshore. Though the defendant attempted to get away with an extremely low offer, our team obtained a settlement that was many times larger.
  • $6.6Million Settlement Obtained for Wife & Family of Deceased Offshore Worker Arnold & Itkin helped a woman and her family get justice after her husband was killed in an incident offshore. Despite undue pressure from the defendant, our firm made sure our clients were taken care of for the rest of their lives.
  • $6.5Million Settlement Secured for Injured Crew Member on Barge Arnold & Itkin obtained a seven-figure settlement for an offshore worker who was injured off the coast of Florida while working in needlessly dangerous conditions. His settlement will help him move forward after irreparable damage was done to his head and face.
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