By JW Law
Everyone who signs up to serve their nation in the military recognizes that duty includes risks. But people may not realize that private contractors working for the military also face risk of serious injuries or death.
And at times, corporations and insurance companies unfairly deny worker compensation, medical treatment or disability payments to the civilian contractors injured or killed abroad.
In a recent case, an American accountant was killed working for a company hired by the U.S. military to provide payroll services in Turkey. He was moving a piece of exercise equipment into his apartment when the building’s elevator malfunctioned. The contractor’s widow was denied compensation on the grounds that his death was supposedly “not work-related.”
She turned to Jorden “Nick” Pedersen of Javerbaum Wurgaft Hicks Kahn Wikstrom Sinins P.C., who specializes in helping private contractors killed or injured abroad while on the job for the U.S. government.
Pedersen filed a claim under the Defense Base Act (DBA), a little-known law that creates a worker-compensation system for federal contract employees working overseas. DBA, is an extension of the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act which is seldom used.
“There could be 50 firms around the country doing it,” Pedersen recently told Super Lawyers, which has published an article highlighting Pedersen’s expertise. “I can only say with accuracy that there are very few firms in the country that handle this type of work.”
Super Lawyers Magazine article: Bases Covered.
“We are pleased to help those who risk their lives abroad, doing important work,” added Pedersen, who has been practicing for over 40 years.
“Nick is an exceptional attorney whose skill and unique specialty are a large part of why he represents hundreds of civilians injured overseas,” said Eric Kahn, managing partner at Javerbaum Wurgaft.