Esco Marine seeks summary judgment in Jones Act suit

By David Yates | Feb 11, 2013

Arguing that the plaintiff is not entitled to recovery under the Jones Act, Esco Marine has filed a motion for summary judgment.

As previously reported, Sergio Higa filed the suit on Dec. 14, 2011, in Jefferson County District Court, alleging Esco failed to provide him with a safe workplace.

Esco filed a motion for summary judgment on Jan. 14, stating that the plaintiff’s testimony establishes that he is not a seaman and therefore not entitled to recover damages under the Jones Act.

Court records show that on Aug. 1, a discovery control plan order was entered in the case, calling for the case to be mediated on or before Jan. 28 or face a February 2013 trial.

The lawsuit states that on July 11, 2011, Higa was working for Esco when he “received serious and disabling injuries” that required medical attention.

However, the suit fails to state how Higa was injured and declines to list a single specific act of negligence committed by Esco in causing his alleged injuries.

The suit only alleges the vessel was unseaworthy but does not state how.

Higa is suing for his alleged past and future medical expenses, mental anguish, pain, impairment, disfigurement and lost wages, plus all court costs.

Houston attorney Brian Beckcom of Vujasinovic & Beckcom represents him.

Attorney Scott Soule of the Louisiana law firm Blue Williams LLP represents Esco.

Judge Bob Wortham, 58th District Court, is assigned to the case.

Case No. A191-473

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