The Death on the High Seas Act (DOHSA)
Maritime workers face a number of dangerous situations every day. Because of these dangers, it’s critical that maritime companies and vessel owners comply with the federal safety laws and corporate safety policies designed to prevent accidents.
When the company fails to do so, the consequences are often serious—resulting in lifelong disability, loss of wages, and medical treatment—and even fatal.
The Death on the High Seas Act (DOHSA) applies exclusively to fatal accidents that take place on offshore vessels located more than 3 miles from shore.
Damages Recoverable under DOHSA
DOHSA entitles a deceased worker’s spouse, children and/or other family members to recover damages for:
- lost financial support the decedent (person who has died) would have provided to his family members had they survived
- any inheritance that the decedent’s children would have received from the decedent
- loss of household services, which includes the value of the household chores, repairs, maintenance and upkeep that the decedent would have provided, and
- funeral expenses