While New Jersey, like most states, has its own workers’ compensation act, there are other workers’ compensation acts that may apply to New Jersey employees based upon their professions. For example, maritime employees who suffer injuries while working may be eligible for benefits under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA). In a recently delivered opinion, a New Jersey district court discussed the factors considered in assessing whether an employment relationship exists for purposes of the LHWCA. If you suffered an injury while working in New Jersey, it is advisable to speak to a capable New Jersey workers’ compensation attorney regarding your rights.
The Plaintiff’s Injury and Allegations
It is reported that the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the defendant employer, asserting negligence claims. The case was transferred to a New Jersey district court. Following discovery, the defendant filed a motion for summary judgment. In support of its motion, the defendant argued that it was statutorily immune from liability due to the fact that it employed the plaintiff and the exclusivity provision of the LHWCA barred employees from pursuing tort claims against their employers. The plaintiff opposed the motion, arguing that the issue of whether he was an employee should be decided by the jury. Ultimately, the court found the evidence supported the defendant’s arguments and granted its motion, dismissing the plaintiff’s claims.
Employment Relationships Under the LHWCA
The LHWCA establishes a workers’ compensation program that provides longshoremen with a variety of benefits. Like other workers’ compensation laws, the rights provided under the LHWCA extinguish an employee’s common law right to pursue tort claims against an employer, limiting an employer’s liability to the payment of no-fault payments. Continue Reading ›