Attorneys for the maritime worker
since 1970

November 2017

Do I Sue Or Grieve?


We frequently get calls from maritime workers who feel they have been wrongfully terminated or otherwise treated unfairly by their employers. Typically, they want “to sue” the shipowner. Unlike a personal injury case, wrongful termination, harassment or unfair treatment is largely governed by your collective bargaining agreement. If this should happen to you, the first thing you must do is to contact your union representative and insist that they file a grievance on your behalf. You must follow this procedure before you can bring a suit against your employer. If the grievance is rejected by the company your union representative has other steps that can be taken if they deem the grievance has merit. Procedures vary from Union to Union. It is important that any grievance be promptly made and pursued!

Question From The Bridge

I was injured aboard ship and then they fired me. I want to sue them for wrongful termination. Can you help me?
Terry M., San Francisco

Dear Terry,
You actually have two different claims. One is for your injury and the other is for being wrongfully let go. We can help you with your injury case and we will get to work on it immediately. However, the wrongful termination case must follow the collective bargaining agreement and must be fully grieved through your Union. Contact your representative immediately so they can start the process for you.

Now Back In Oakland At

The Law Offices of Cavin and Marks, Jr.
428 Alice St., Suite 128
Oakland, CA 94607

About Our Law Firm

For more than four decades, merchant mariners, longshoremen, fishermen and harbor workers plying their trades at sea, on the docks, on our U.S. coastal waters and inland waterways have turned to the maritime law firm of Law Offices of Cavin and Marks, Jr. & Associates in Oakland. Today, we are proud to be recognized as one of the preeminent maritime law firms serving injured marine workers nationwide, as well as one of the most successful personal injury litigation firms serving victims of negligence in the San Francisco Bay Area and throughout the West Coast.

Team Approach To Every Personal Injury And Jones Act Claim

When you retain Law Offices of Cavin and Marks, Jr. & Associates for a Jones Act injury claim, or personal injury claim, you don’t get just one attorney, you get our entire team of dedicated professionals. Our attorneys offer more than 150 combined years of courtroom and negotiated claims settlement experience. We will represent your interests with unwavering dedication, speed and expertise.