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How does the Longshore Act define injury?

The great benefit of the Longshore Act is that it protects people who work on Manhattan docks or on the navigable waters of the United States if they should suffer injury. However, some in New York may wonder how far the Longshore Act goes in offering help to injured maritime workers. What exactly does this law mean by injury? Fortunately, the U.S. government explains how the Longshore Act defines injury, and thus makes it clear who can be compensated by this law.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, for the purposes of the Longshore Act, injury can be defined as injury caused by accident during a worker’s regular course of employment. A person doing maritime work at a dock who is injured from a piece of work equipment is one such example. Someone who is killed as a result of an accident also qualifies as an accidental injury.

However, sometimes a maritime worker may get hurt because of someone’s deliberate actions to inflict injury. The Longshore Act will define injury as including instances when a worker suffers injury from a third person due to the worker’s employment. So a worker who is assaulted by another person for reasons related to the worker’s maritime employment can seek compensation under the Longshore Act.

In addition, the Longshore Act considers occupational disease as an injury. Someone like a dock worker, for example, could receive compensation as a result of an occupational disease or an infection that develops as a result of the natural course of being a dock worker. The Longshore Act also offers compensation for occupational disease that resulted from an accidental injury that a worker may have previously suffered.

Additionally, there are workers who do not qualify for compensation under the Longshore Act regardless of their injury, but such individuals may still find relief under the Jones Act or workers’ compensation. There are many avenues available for an injured maritime worker to seek assistance to recover from an injury. Because maritime workers can suffer any number of injuries while on the job, this article should not be read as legal advice. Only read it for general information purposes.

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