Death on the High Seas Act
Admiralty & Maritime Law Attorney in Miami, Florida
When a wrongful death occurs more than three miles – or the marine
league – away from the shore and on the high seas, a claim can be
filed using the Death on the High Seas Act (DOHSA). While close family
members and financial dependents of the decedent can benefit from such
a claim, it cannot be filed by them. Instead, DOHSA claims need to be
created by someone who has been named as a personal representative of
the decedent, or a professional lawyer hired by the named administrator.
Has your loved one lost their life due to employer negligence or the general
unseaworthiness of their vessel? Do you need assistance with a DOHSA claim? You can rely
on David C. Rash, P.A. and our
admiralty and maritime disasters attorney for all the legal guidance and advocacy you need.
Our Miami injury law firm stands out due to our accolades and accomplishments,
- 25+ years of legal and trial experience
- Millions won for past clients
- AV® Preeminent™ rating by Martindale-Hubbell®
- 10.0 “Superb” rating by Avvo
Start your case with surety. Call 954.914.7116 today.
Damages in a DOHSA Claim
Due to the ambiguity of maritime law, it can be difficult to determine
what damages you can recover after losing a loved one on the high seas.
With our assistance, experience, and know-how, we can help you pursue
every last cent that you deserve following such a tragedy by successfully
interpreting the law and upholding your rights.
Parties that could recover compensation in a DOHSA claim are:
Children: Estimated total value of any care and parental guidance they should have
received from the decedent throughout their lives.
Spouse: The actual, calculated value of the income and contribution the decedent
would have given their spouse, with a subtraction for the amount of that
income that would have gone solely to the decedent’s own benefit.
Dependents: Any other legal dependent, whether they are a child or an adult, may be
able to recover the estimated cost of the care and service the decedent
would have given them.
Spouses in wrongful death claims can usually collect compensation for loss
of consortium or companionship. A DOHSA claim does not grant this option
but it can reward an amount of compensation equal to the cost of household
services or help the decedent could have offered during the marriage.
A rough estimate of how many hours a month the decedent put into household
chores is multiplied with what someone would have to pay to receive those
same services in the state. The end result is the compensatory amount,
extrapolated for many years.
DOHSA Aviation Rules
The Death on the High Seas Act also considers aviation disasters and accidents
as potential grounds for a lawsuit under the act. An aviation crash that
occurs more than 12 nautical miles from the nearest shore is considered
to have occurred on the high seas, and fits the requirements of the DOHSA.
Private aircraft and helicopter flights booked without any promise of
compensation do not qualify; in general, DOHSA applies only to airline
Retain an Experience Lawyer for Your DOHSA Claim
The average person with little to no naval or captainship experience is
not expected to fully understand the nuances and intricacies of admiralty
and maritime law. In order to take the guesswork out of your case and
bring clarity to your questions and concerns,
contact Miami Maritime Law Attorney David C. Rash today. During your scheduled
complimentary consultation, you can discover your rights and what you should do next to pursue compensation
in honor of the loved one you have lost on the high seas.