Deckhand sues to receive maintenance and cure benefits

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Nov. 17, 2010, 9:00am

GALVESTON - Arnold S. Barrios claims AET Lightering Services refused to provide coverage for his necessary rehabilitation treatments, negatively affecting his performance as a deckhand, recent court documents say.

In a lawsuit filed Nov. 10 in Galveston County District Court, Barrios claims that he required rehabilitation after he suffered sharp chest pain on May 13, 2009, while working aboard the vessel AET Shelby.

The plaintiff was taken to Clear Lake Regional Medical Center where physicians inserted a stint into his heart. He then spent four days at the hospital and another 11 recuperating at home.

According to the suit, Barrios was not able to obtain short-term disability payments nor rehabilitation treatments, so he was forced to return to work even though he had not fully recovered.

"The defendant has consistently denied the plaintiff any maintenance or cure or any other benefits, such as payment for out-of-pocket expenses and medical co-payments," the original petition says.

Barrios asserts that he cannot work as quickly as he used to because of his injuries, and tires easily.

"Had the plaintiff received the maintenance and cure benefits to which he was entitled, he could have completed rehabilitation and improved his chances of a complete recovery," the suit says.

Barrio consequently seeks unspecified monetary damages.

He is represented by The Law Offices of Filteau & Sullivan Ltd. LLP.

The case has been assigned to Galveston County 10th District Court Judge David Garner.

Case No. 10-cv-4134

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