State Workers’ Comp Benefits vs. Longshore and Harbor Workers Comp

The Difference between State Workers’ Compensation Benefits and Benefits Available under the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act (the LHWCA)


When you have been injured as a longshoreman or in a job where a significant part of your duties are related to maritime activity, you can often choose to pursue benefits under the federal Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, or to seek compensation under state workers’ compensation programs. You can’t collect under both, though. If you file a federal claim, it will offset any state benefits to which you may be entitled. Likewise, the federal statute requires that any state benefits already received be taken into consideration when eligibility for federal benefits is determined.

The Benefits of the LHWCA

Under most state workers’ compensation laws, your benefits cap out at 60% of your average weekly wage (AWW) for the last 52 weeks. The LHWCA, however, allows you to receive up to two-thirds (66.67%) of your last year’s AWW. In addition, state workers’ compensation programs typically don’t allow claimants to obtain permanent partial disability benefits, establishing instead a fixed period of time during which benefits will be paid. Under the LHWCA, you can receive an award of benefits for:

  • Temporary partial disability
  • Permanent partial disability’
  • Temporary total disability
  • Permanent total disability

You can also expect reimbursement of all “reasonable and/or necessary medical” expenses, including mileage and transportation costs.

Contact Uliase & Uliase

For an appointment with an experienced New Jersey federal workers‘ compensation lawyer, contact us online or call our office at 856-310-9002. We meet with clients weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. We offer a free consultation for injured workers.

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