Pretty much every legal claim has a time restriction within which the plaintiff can file a lawsuit. This time limit is known as the statute of limitations period. With a few exceptions, your claim will be declined if you do not act within the statute of limitations period.
If you are a seaman or a maritime worker, you may be entitled to financial restitution if you are hurt at work. To pursue your claim, however, you must act within the Jones Act statute of limitations period.
So how much time do you have to file your claim under the Jones Act?
Under the Jones Act, you typically have up to three years from the date of injury or when you become aware of the extent of your injury or illness to file your claim. Your claim will likely be denied if you do not act within the three-year period.
The purpose of this statute of limitations is to provide a reasonable time frame within which you can put together any relevant evidence and/or the facts relevant to your case. The longer you take to bring your claim, the more likely you will lose crucial evidence, and this can be detrimental to your case.
Claims that you can seek under the statute of limitations period
Any injury or illness that is attributable to your work in a vessel would qualify for compensation. If you suffered your injury while on assignment, or if you can trace your illness back to conditions you experienced while working on a vessel, then the statute of limitations would determine when you can file your claim.
Protecting your rights
Pursuing a legal claim is time-intensive, especially if you have an injury or an illness to deal with. Learning more about the statute of limitations for maritime law can help you protect your rights while pursuing damages following a maritime-related injury or illness.