Jones Act & Maritime Lawyer

Injured on or Near the Water?

Our Norfolk based Virginia Jones Act and Maritime Injury Lawyers have represented maritime workers who have been injured in the course of their employment, as well as those injured in recreational boating accidents. Attorney Richard Serpe is experienced with cases under the Jones Act and the general maritime law, and takes pride in helping those who were injured on our waterways due to no fault of their own. If you or a loved one have been injured while working or vacationing on a seagoing vessel, contact us for a free case review 877-544-5323.

You Need an Attorney Who Understands Maritime Laws

The best personal injury attorney who devotes his or her practice to injuries occurring on land will be familiar with state law concepts that these cases involve.  Maritime matters, on the other hand, are governed by federal law, and you need an attorney who understands these laws.

  • After law school, Richard Serpe obtained his Master’s Degree (LLM) in maritime law from Tulane University School of Law.
  • He has obtained the highest ranking (Proctor) from the Maritime Law Association of the United States.
  • He has successfully prosecuted cases under the Jones Act, bringing fair and just compensation to sailors who were injured while performing their duties.
  • Richard Serpe has years of experience in protecting the rights of injured seamen; He knows how the insurers of commercial vessels will do everything they can to minimize their financial liability, even if it is at the expense of decent treatment for the injured.

Maritime Injuries on the Job

Anyone who has spent time earning a living on the ocean can tell you that it’s a dangerous business. The sheer unpredictability of the ocean can put even the most experienced of sailors or the strongest of ships at risk. These conditions demand competence and professionalism from all of the crew members of any seagoing vessel, whether it’s a cruise ship, fishing boat, tugboat, barge, etc. Anything less places lives at risk. While it is true that working on our oceans is inherently dangerous, that fact does not absolve the shipowner, captain or crew members from responsibility should one of their employees or fellow workers suffer an injury.

Sailors on sailboats and powerboats, jet ski operators, cruise ship passengers…

If a non-seafarer (this might include a cruise ship passenger, the rider of a jet ski, or an airplane passenger involved in a crash away from the land) is injured or killed, then the laws depend on where the accident occurred. Special regulations and rules, including Coast Guard regulations and the Limitation of Liability Act, can have an important impact on a victim’s potential financial recovery. For example, many cruise line tickets contain various disclaimers that may limit a passenger’s right to sue. Maritime cases present very unique laws and issues which are best handled by an experienced maritime lawyer.

Wrongful Death

When death occurs on the high seas or on the navigable waters of the United States, the legal issues that can be implicated are numerous.

The applicable laws, who can file a claim, and the remedies available can vary tremendously, depending on whether the person killed was a seaman, a longshoreman, or a non-seafarer; what caused the accident; who is being sued; and precisely where the accident occurred.  The general rules can be summarized, but this area of the maritime law is so complex and, at times, volatile, that small factual differences can make a big legal difference.

Let’s Discuss Your Situation 877-544-533


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“After a major maritime accident on the water, I was scared and didn’t know where to turn. The Law Offices of Richard Serpe and his great staff treated me with the utmost respect and attention that I needed. They treated me like a member of the family. I was awarded a settlement that changed my life and my family’s life, and I thank the law firm for that. Not only during the case, but after as well, the law firm has looked after me. If I had to recommend anyone, I would recommend Richard Serpe.” - Eddie

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