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What protections does the Longshore Harbor Workers Act provide?

The Chesapeake Bay is an important part of life in Maryland. It provides recreation and employment for many people in the state. Unfortunately, people have suffered from work-related injuries or even death as they performed their job duties while working on the waterways in Maryland. These people, or their loved ones in the event of a fatality, may qualify for insurance protection as required by the Longshore Harbor Workers Act.

The act protects people who are injured or killed while working on the country's waterways or docks, for example. The act currently provides benefits for approximately 500,000 workers. The benefits provided under this act can also extend to dependent family members in the event of a fatality.

The insurance coverage required by the act can provide compensation for a variety of expenses, including medical bills and a portion of lost wages. In the case of a fatality, it can cover funeral expenses and support for children and other dependents until the age of 18. These benefits can extend past the age of 18 if the dependent is not able to support himself or herself or is a student.

The government does not provide the coverage but requires that employers secure the insurance coverage for their employees. If there is a disagreement over compensation, a hearing will be held with a judge. A ruling by the judge can be appealed to the Court of Appeals and then to the Supreme Court. For many people who may be protected by the Longshore Harbor Workers Act, knowledge of all the facets of the act may be necessary to ensure proper compensation. As a result, many people in Maryland have found it beneficial to seek guidance from those with such knowledge.

Source: dol.gov, "Division of Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation (DLHWC)", , Sept. 7, 2014

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