A seafarer that becomes sick or injured while in the service of a vessel is entitled to maintenance and cure benefits as well as unearned wages. The seafarer is entitled to these benefits regardless of whether the ship owner employer is at fault or not. Maintenance is money or provision of food and lodging while the crew member is on shore recovering from the illness or injury. Cure is payment of all medical expense, including doctors; hospital; medication; medical equipment; and transportation to and from the medical appointments. The seafarer is entitled to these benefits until he or she reaches Maximum Medical Improvement (also called “MMI”). That is when the doctor indicates the seafarer has fully recovered or, if a permanent injury, then it is when the doctor indicates no further medical care will improve the medical condition. The ship owner/employer must provide prompt, proper and adequate medical care. The crew member is entitled to Unearned Wages until the end of the voyage or pursuant to the contract terms. If a ship owner willfully refuses a crew member Maintenance and Cure benefits, then the seafarer may be entitled to additional damages to compensate the crewmember and to punish the ship owner. If you are denied Maintenance and Cure benefits or the ship owner/employer fails to completely honor their legal obligation to provide these benefits, Attorney Meister can help you.
As a dedicated and experienced advocate for seafarers’ legal rights, Attorney Meister will work tirelessly on your behalf if your employer refuses to comply with the law. We will seek to recover the benefits you are entitled to, such as:
As an experienced admiralty and maritime law attorney, Attorney Meister understands how to take on powerful interests such as powerful ship owners and corporate employers. In a free consultation, she will help you understand what type of recovery you can expect so you can proceed with confidence in your claim.
Meister Law, LLC represents clients in maintenance and cure claims as well as other maritime and admiralty law matters. Please call 786-623-4162 or contact her online to schedule a free initial consultation.