By:   Charles R. Lipcon

Our Maritime Personal Injury Team Demands Liable Parties Compensate Victims Fairly and Protects Crew Member Rights After Barge, Cargo, and Tanker Accidents

cargo-ship-at-miami-harborThe barge, cargo, and tanker accident attorneys at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. are the United States’ top-rated personal injury and maritime accident lawyers. We have been in business since 1971 and have fought for injury victim’s rights for more than five decades. Our team is committed to helping our clients recover the compensation they are entitled to after cargo, tanker, and barge accidents. No matter where you live or your injuries occurred, our firm can help. We take great pride in our ability to handle maritime cases across the globe. We have eight office locations across the nation and 15 full-time attorneys who are legal maritime experts ready to take on your case.

We have more than 200 years of combined legal experience and have recovered $300,000,000+ in trial verdicts and insurance settlements over the years. It is no surprise that our attorneys at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. have been named to “Best Lawyers” ® and selected as one of the “Best Law Firms” ® in America by US News & World Report every year as far back as 2016.

When your employer or a vessel owner fails to ensure crewmember safety, you may have the right to substantial financial compensation for your damages. Our wealth of experience as maritime and personal injury attorneys can work for you. We have appeared on numerous talk shows and national news programs as expert guests regarding maritime injury law. Founding attorney Charles Lipcon has even handled some of the nation’s most prominent cases, paving the way the United States handles maritime injury claims.

Read more below to find out how our barge, cargo, and tanker accident lawyers will guide you through the claims process and ensure you receive maximum compensation for your suffering. Contact our office for a free consultation today so we can start exploring your legal options for financial relief.

Common Injuries From Barge, Cargo and Tanker Accidents

Large vessels like cargo ships and tankers transport the vast majority of goods around the world. They are huge and filled with massive amounts of cargo, which must be properly secured to be transported safely. Cargo ship and tanker accidents can result from:

  • Unsecured cargo that shifts or falls over in transit
  • Slips and falls
  • Collisions with other ships
  • Machinery accidents and malfunctions

Injuries as a result of these accidents may cause:

  • Burns
  • Amputations
  • Crushing injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Back and spinal injuries
  • Paralysis
  • Exposure to hazardous substances

Laws That Protect Barge, Tanker, and Cargo Ship Workers

Generally speaking, the law that applies to U.S.-based ship workers is the Jones Act. It is a Federal Statute and it is one of the most worker-friendly laws on the books. The Jones Act entitles commercial shipping crews to Maintenance and Cure. Maintenance and Cure is the right to have your employer pay for medical care and provide you with a daily living wage if you suffer an accident or injury onboard a vessel. Maintenance and Cure must be provided to you, regardless of who is at fault. A seafarer whose employer does not follow their full obligation under Maintenance and Cure may also be awarded punitive damages for the failure

If the employer, the vessel owner, or operator is, in whole or in part, to blame for the cause of the accident, like negligence or improper maintenance, then you may be entitled to significant further compensation for pain and suffering under either the Jones Act, or also potentially under the doctrine of unseaworthiness, which requires a vessel owner to maintain a seaworthy ship (this has a very broad definition but basically any problem with the vessel, or its crew can render the vessel unseaworthy).

The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act also provides for compensation when a ship or dock worker is injured in the course of activities, such as the loading and unloading of cargo, ship repair, or work on decks or piers.

The Death on High Seas Act governs any maritime accident that takes place more than three miles away from U.S. land. It allows a surviving family member to seek damages for the death of a maritime worker caused by neglect or a wrongful act occurring on the high seas. Generally speaking the Death on the High Seas Act is not a favorable recovery scheme when a death occurs, but with crewmembers, the damages can be supplemented by the Jones Act.

Who Do You Sue In A Barge, Cargo, or Tanker Accident?

Who to sue in the event of a maritime accident depends upon the specific circumstances of the incident, but in general terms, if the owner or operator of a vessel has acted in a manner that you believe constitutes negligence, then they may be liable for injuries sustained by a seaman. An employer may have failed to properly inspect or maintain a vessel, allowed dangerous conditions to persist, failed to properly train employees or provide adequate safety equipment, or overworked employees to the point that fatigue and injury occurred. In any of these instances, the employer may be held liable for medical expenses, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and pain and suffering. When we take on a new case involving an accident or injury on a container ship or barge, we start by looking at the contract of employment and work out from there. It is very common in cases like these that we will sue numerous defendants including the employer, the shipowner, and the ship operator.


Companies We Have Sued

Our Barge, Cargo, and Tanker Accident Lawyers Bring Liable Parties to Justice and Demand Victims Receive Fair Compensation for Their Suffering

Our law firm has been recognized as one of the “Best Law Firms” ® every year since 2016, and four of our attorneys have been selected as “Best Lawyers”® in America by US News & World Report. We are the nation’s leading maritime accident lawyers and have unparalleled success in protecting crew member’s rights. Our barge, cargo, and tanker accident attorneys are ready to help you through these tough times and recover maximum compensation for your losses.

When you or someone you love has been critically injured or killed in a tanker or barge accident, and you are unsure of where to turn for help, look no further than our attorneys at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. We are ready to give your case the attention it deserves. Call our office at 877–233–1238 or contact us immediately to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation and speak with an experienced maritime injury lawyer.