When Does the Longshore Act Apply

Does the Longshore Act Apply to Your Work Injury?

Paul Hofmann
Specializes in personal injury, with emphasis on maritime, railroad and construction worker tort claims

Since its enactment in 1927, the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (Longshore Act) has provided protection to some maritime workers who are hurt on the job. If you have been hurt while working on a dock, in a harbor, or in another maritime position then you are going to want to know if the Longshore Act applies to you and what you should do to protect your rights.

Who Qualifies for Protection?

Generally, a longshoreman, harbor worker, shipbuilder, ship repairer, or ship breaker may be covered by the Longshore Act. However, there are some people who work on docks or in harbors who do not qualify for protection.

Specifically, the Longshore Act has explicit exceptions for the following kinds of workers if state workers’ compensation laws apply to their recoveries:

  • Workers who exclusively do secretarial, clerical or data processing work
  • Workers who exclusively do security work
  • Workers who are employed by a club, camp, retail outlet, restaurant, recreational operation or museum
  • Workers who are employed by a marina and who are not working in the construction, replacement, or expansion of the marina
  • Aquaculture workers
  • Workers who are employed to build, repair or dismantle recreational vessels under sixty-five feet in length
  • Individuals employed by suppliers, transporters or vendors
  • Some individuals who are temporarily doing business
  • Individuals who are not doing work that is normally done by those who are covered by the Longshore Act

It also does not apply to:

  • A master or crewmember of a vessel
  • Workers asked by a master to load, unload, or repair a small vessel that weighs under eighteen tons

Other laws apply to protect the rights of these injured workers.

Pursue a Claim According to the Applicable Law

The myriad of maritime injury laws and other workers’ compensation laws is complex and it is important to pursue the right type of claim in order to protect your recovery. If you have questions about which laws apply to you, we encourage you to read the articles in the related link section of this page and start a live chat with us today.