Understanding “Maintenance and Cure” in Maritime Law  

Understanding “Maintenance and Cure” in Maritime Law  

Most merchant seamen and commercial fisherman have heard the term “maintenance and cure” before. Still, not everyone understands what this term means. This guide will attempt to outline the definition of the term “maintenance and cure” and will help you understand the legal process that is necessary in the event that you require a maintenance and cure lawyer.

Maintenance and Cure: A Quick Definition

Generally speaking, maintenance and cure refers to a type of legal compensation benefits. Injured commercial fisherman or injured merchant seamen will receive these maintenance and cure benefits in the event that they are injured while working at sea on open water. This is true no matter who was at fault for the injuries they sustained.

Defining Maintenance

Within the term maintenance and cure, each word means something different. The word maintenance refers to room and board. While recovering from the serious injury sustained on the job, the injured seaman or maritime worker will receive compensation for room and board.

This monetary amount also includes other types of expenses. For example, maintenance includes things like property taxes, utilities, mortgage or rent, and homeowners or renters insurance. It does not, however, include things like Internet payments, cable, telephone charges, cell phone bills, or vehicle payments or insurance. Mostly, maintenance takes care of only the essential bills associated with room and board.

Of course, payment for these expenses will not go on forever. In most cases of maintenance and cure, maintenance payments will be made up until the point of what’s called maximum medical improvement or MMI.

Defining Cure

You may have already guessed what the word cure refers to. When a seaman or maritime worker is seriously injured, they’ll need to pay considerable medical expenses throughout their recovery. Cure refers to payments made for necessary medical expenses. These include things like surgeries, hospital stays, medications and prescriptions, physical therapy, and doctors’ appointments. It also refers to all transportation costs that had to be paid or will need to be paid in order to get to and from doctors’ offices, hospitals, etc. Again, these expenses will be paid until the injured individual reaches a point of MMI (maximum medical improvement).

Hiring a Maintenance and Cure Lawyer

If you were injured on the job working as a maritime worker or seaman and your employer has refused to pay maintenance and cure, you can hire a maintenance and cure lawyer to represent you. By law, your employer is required to pay these expenses.

It is essential to contact a reputable and experienced lawyer in your area as soon as possible. They will be able to make a consultation appointment with you and discuss your case and legal options.

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