Maintenance, cure and unearned wages in a maritime claim

On Behalf of | Jan 10, 2024 | Commercial Seamen |

If you are a maritime worker, you may be entitled to several benefits if you’re injured in a workplace accident.

The primary benefits to which you are likely entitled are maintenance, cure and unearned wages.


One of the benefits of working at sea is that you can generally avoid expenditure while out there. Your employer likely gives you room and board on top of paying you a wage. If you are injured and unable to work, you may still be able to claim the living costs you would have received were you still at work. This is known as maintenance, and courts tend to award it at around $20 to $30 per day.


To get back to work or, if that is not possible, to get to the point of maximum medical recovery will likely require medical treatment. This can be expensive, but you should be entitled to recompense for it, known as “cure.” You do, however, need to make an effort to keep those expenses reasonable, so don’t rush out to see the most expensive doctor you can find.

Unearned wages

What would you have earned if you had not got injured and were able to complete your contract? You are typically still be entitled to these wages in the event that you suffer an injury. One example is any percentage you were meant to receive of the fishing catch the trawler you were working on made while you were absent due to recovery.

Employers and their insurers may seek to limit these payments, disputing the length or terms of your contract, the cost of medical treatment or what board and lodging are worth. Getting legal help to understand and fight for your rights may be crucial to getting the total you deserve.