Maintenance and Cure Benefits: A Primary Option
General maritime law entitles your husband to “maintenance and cure” benefits to be paid by his employer.
The law is strongly in your husband’s favor in regard to his right to maintenance and cure benefits as defined below:
- Maintenance – The amount of money required to “maintain” your husband in the style afforded to him when he was working at sea. This generally includes daily living costs, such as food and lodging, and standard monthly bills (such as for electricity and heating).
- The industry standard rate is $15 to $30 a day for maintenance. This figure is obviously low, but may help to offset some of your husband’s living expenses as he recovers from injury.
- Cure – The amount of money required to treat your husband’s medical expenses. The law only provides for expenses deemed “reasonable” and related to your husband’s maritime work injury.
Your husband may pursue maintenance and cure if his employer refuses to pay these benefits. He may do so by presenting his claim to a jury or judge. A successful claim may result in payment of owed benefits, plus attorney fees. Your husband may be owed additional damages if the judge or jury believes your husband’s employer behaved unreasonably in declining to pay these benefits.
Other Types of Benefits to Consider
Your family may consider other types of benefits as your husband recovers from his injuries and is unable to work:
- Social Security disability – Your husband may qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) if his injuries have made it impossible to work. He must have adequate work credits to qualify. A claim must be accompanied by substantial medical evidence of a medically determinable impairment.
- Short–term and long-term disability – Your husband may be eligible for benefits under an individual or group disability policy. This coverage provides payments to insured employees who cannot work because of serious illness or injury. Policies generally cover between 60 and 80 percent of lost income based on the details of the policy.
Our law offices can provide further instruction on how to apply for available disability benefits as your husband’s Jones Act or maritime injury claim progresses to settlement. We also can discuss the available compensation in a maritime injury claim, such as punitive damages, lost wages and more. Call 866-715-3664 to schedule a free case evaluation.