When a serious legal issue arises, the help of a qualified and experienced lawyer can certainly come in handy. Unfortunately, how to go about choosing the right kind of attorney can be a confusing and time consuming affair. However, the process of obtaining the right kind of legal help can be much easier as long as the seafarer understands what he or she should consider before looking for a lawyer.
In general, the kind of legal problem you have should determine the kind of lawyer you should hire. Sometimes, determining the true nature of your legal issue may require a lawyer to examine the circumstances of your case first. But for many seafarers, the issues can be fairly straightforward.
Consider an attorney’s specialization: Maritime Injury Lawyers are recommended for accidents at sea.
For seafarers, the help of an experienced maritime lawyer is always necessary when it comes to dealing with legal problems. The following legal issues that are best handled by a maritime lawyer are:
Claims for personal injuries and/or sickness
Claims against employers for unpaid wages, unpaid overtime, etc.
If you have been involved in a marine casualty or incident
Location: Consider the offending party’s country and state.
Besides the lawyer’s area of expertise, where the lawyer is licensed to practice is another important consideration. Crew members looking to file a claim against their employers must choose maritime attorneys who are licensed to practice where the employing company is headquartered.
If a personal injury or death claim must be filed, then the seafarer must look for a maritime personal injury attorney that is licensed to practice where the employing company is headquartered.
Seafarers that are looking to defend a criminal charge must retain a criminal attorney that is licensed in the country where the criminal complaint was filed.
Sometimes, a seafarer’s legal problem may not be so cut and dry. In the unfortunate situation where this is the case, it may be best for the seafarer to consult a maritime attorney for free legal advice. The law office of Elias B. Rudnikas offers free legal advice to all crew members, regardless of when, where or how the problem arose.