Although most maritime cases are decided in federal court, there are exceptions. Certain maritime disputes are heard in state courts, such as cases involving ongoing mortgages or loan defaults. The “saving to suitors” clause of the United States Constitution allows some cases to go to state court. These actions can also be brought on state soil, but federal law always governs. This is because maritime litigation is very different from other civil disputes. Maritime lawyers understand the intricacies of the federal court system and how to properly represent their clients.
Maritime law applies to a variety of different factual scenarios. It can apply to piracy, criminal activity, towage contracts, and wake damage. It can even apply to insurance issues. In addition to these common cases, a growing number of court decisions have established maritime law jurisdiction in recreational boating accidents. So if you’re involved in a boating accident, you should be familiar with maritime law. There are many specific statutes and case law that apply to accidents.
Under maritime law, an injured crew member has the right to compensation for injury. The compensation may include free medical care for the duration of the trip and treatment that helps them return to normal functions. A successful lawsuit can also include funds for maintenance, rehabilitation, and a way to survive while recovering. Punitive damages are also possible. In addition to these damages, a seaman may also be entitled to attorney fees and compensation for pain and suffering. If you are an injured seaman, it’s important to know your legal rights.