Maritime Law in California

The law governing a maritime injury claim depends on where the incident occurred and what type of worker was involved.

Seamen employed by or otherwise attached to a vessel can likely depend on the Jones Act or the doctrine of unseaworthiness to recover for injuries suffered on the job due to employer or vessel owner negligence.

Workers primarily based shoreside, such as harbor workers, ship builders, and longshoremen, will likely be covered by the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA). Unlike the Jones Act, the LHWCA it is not a tort-related law; rather, it is a form of protection that operates much like California workers’ compensation.

Whether your maritime injury claim qualifies for damages under the Jones Act, the doctrine of unseaworthiness or another general maritime law, Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP can build a strong case for your injury and pursue maximum damages through the appropriate maritime legal venue.

California Maritime Injury Attorneys

California is the most populous state in the United States with approximately 39.5 million people.

California’s extensive water infrastructure system, with its dams, reservoirs, aqueducts, and power plants, is the world’s largest, managing over 40 million acres of water per year. California’s interconnected water system serves more than 30 million people and irrigates over 5,680,000 acres of farmland.

California seaports are a major economic force and are a critical element to the growth of California and the nation’s economy. Seaports are responsible for the movement of goods in international trade and are relied upon to efficiently distribute freight around the globe and across the nation.

The ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach comprise the largest port complex in the United States and are key players in global enterprise. Together, they handle a fourth of all container cargo traffic in the United States. The Port of Oakland, consistently one of the top ten busiest ports in the nation, handles trade from the Pacific Rim countries, delivering 99% of the ocean containers passing through Northern California to the rest of the nation.

According to the California Department of Transportation, California has 11 public ports, which include:

  • three “mega-ports” (Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Oakland);
  • eight smaller niche ports (Hueneme, Humboldt Bay, Redwood City, Richmond, West Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, and Stockton); and
  • one private port (Benicia).

The ports of Oakland, Stockton, and West Sacramento are developing a new barge shipping service funded through a federal TIGER grant.

The Port of San Francisco is responsible for developing, marketing, leasing, managing, and maintaining the seven and a half miles of San Francisco’s Waterfront adjacent to San Francisco Bay.

The operating portfolio for the Port of San Francisco is composed of more than 550 ground commercial, retail, office, industrial and maritime industrial leases. The leases include internationally recognized landmarks such as Fisherman’s Wharf, PIER 39, the Ferry Building, and AT&T Park.

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Prominent California Ports

The busiest ports in the State of California include:

  • Port of Humboldt Bay
  • Port of Hueneme
  • Port of Long Beach
  • Port of Los Angeles
  • Port of Oakland
  • Port of Redwood City
  • Port of Richmond
  • Port of San Diego
  • Port of San Francisco
  • Port of Stockton
  • Port of West Sacramento

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Important Bodies of Water in California

The most important bodies of water in California for maritime cases include:

  • Lake Tahoe
  • The Gulf of California aka The Sea of Cortez
  • The Sacramento River
  • The San Joaquin River
  • Salton Sea
  • Clear Lake
  • Lake Shasta
  • San Francisco Bay

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Additional Resources

Port of San Francisco – The Port of San Francisco manages the waterfront as the gateway to a world-class city and advances environmentally and financially sustainable maritime, recreational, and economic opportunities to serve the City, Bay Area, and California. View this website to find more information about the port such as the San Francisco property map and the port’s plan for 2016-2021.

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BOATLAW, LLP | Maritime Injury Attorneys in California

If you are a maritime employee, such as a commercial fisherman, merchant marine, or shipbuilder, and have been injured on the job or offshore in California, contact the experienced maritime injury attorneys at Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP today.

Our attorneys can build a strong case against the at-fault party for fair compensation for your injuries under the Jones Act, general maritime law, the LHWCA, and other maritime laws.

Our maritime lawyers have offices conveniently located in downtown San Francisco. Contact the lawyers at Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP by calling 1-800-262-8529 today for a free and confidential consultation.