The Benefits of Hiring a Houston Maritime Attorney

If you’re the owner of a large commercial shipping vessel that has recently been damaged, the prospect of dealing with the insurance company alone can be daunting. Thankfully, having an experienced maritime attorney on your side can make all the difference when dealing with insurance companies, as they have the expertise to help you get the compensation that you deserve in regards to your claim. If you would like to learn more about what types of benefits can be obtained by hiring an experienced maritime lawyer, continue reading below!

What is the Jones Act?

A maritime law that must be complied with to maintain competency in the shipping industry. This law was enacted by Congress and signed by President Woodrow Wilson on June 6th, 1920. The Jones Act is comprised of two main sections: Section 27 and Section 28. It regulates not only U.S. citizens who are working as seamen, but also foreigners who work as seamen in our ports, because it’s assumed they were hired here for U.S. citizenship. Basically, what this means is that these people should have either (1) a green card or (2) some form of visa allowing them to work in the United States.

 

Why You Need to Follow it

A maritime lawyer in the U.S. is your best asset when you’re doing business on the water, as they know both state and federal law and can offer sound legal advice. Plus, if a dispute arises over an accident that’s related to the operation or maintenance of your ship, they will guide you through the arbitration process that’s required by law in this situation. If someone has been injured on your boat, for example, you’ll need their expertise in determining who should be held responsible for paying the medical bills.

For these reasons and more, hiring a maritime attorney in US is essential for any businessperson who works with ships.

Whether a Jones Act Lawyer Is Needed

If you are in the process of seeking damages for maritime injury or death, you might want to make sure that an experienced attorney is guiding your case. Jones Act Lawyer Charles Giannotti is skilled at handling Jones Act cases such as personal injury, wrongful death, seaman’s and longshoreman’s benefits, duty-free stores, recreational and charter fishing vessel casualties. He has over 40 years of experience and is knowledgeable about every aspect of maritime law. Mr. Giannotti will be able to advise you on how best to proceed with your claim, including whether or not you need a medical expert witness for evaluation purposes. Contact him today for free consultation!

What Types of Cases Does a Maritime Lawyer Handle?

In the United States, maritime law attorneys handle all sorts of cases involving transportation by water. Whether you need a maritime lawyer because you are an oceanographer or because you work for the U.S. Navy, it is important to know that these lawyers have expertise in the legal rules and court procedures involved with transport by water. Maritime attorneys help clients with matters relating to fishing rights, marine insurance policies, salvage operations, and much more.

How Can I Be Sure My Houston Maritime Lawyer Has Experience?

At the Law Office of Douglas L. Smith, P.C., we pride ourselves on our years of experience, knowledgeable staff and honest service to all our maritime law clients. A member in good standing with the Texas Bar Association, Douglas L. Smith is one of only two maritime lawyers in Texas Board Certified for Admiralty and Maritime Law and has decades’ worth of experience successfully representing clients both in and out of courtrooms.

How Long Will My Case Take?

Although every case is different, the average time to handle a case from start to finish is about 3-4 months. The truth is that this question can only be answered after you sit down with an attorney for an initial consultation. The answers will depend on your specific needs and what type of maritime claim or lawsuit you are pursuing. We may have to file motions, negotiate settlements, attend court hearings, do discovery work and more. However, if you have a straightforward matter where liability is not contested by any other party involved in the dispute then it may take less than six months. On the other hand if there are multiple defendants then it could take longer depending on how many parties need to be served with the complaint, how cooperative they are in responding to requests for information and other factors unique to each case.

conclusion

For ships, the Houston maritime attorney can be an integral part of planning for future progress. Additionally, it is in the best interest for any entity that does business at sea to always have a maritime attorney on hand to ensure any changes in law or case law are promptly responded to and accounted for. It is also important to have a specialist available when emergencies arise as well.

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