The Defense Base Act provides coverage to contractors who may be injured or killed while overseas. The DBA is an extension of the Harbor and Workers’ Compensation Act. It is designed to be used for civilian federal contractors who will go overseas to work on U.S. Government bases. It also applies to subcontractors under the same conditions.
Who is covered by the Defense Base Act?
The Defense Base Act covers individuals such as:
- Personal security specialists
- Canine handlers
- Translators and interpreters
- Base and tower security
- Truck drivers
- Food service workers
- Social scientists
- Construction engineers
- Military and police trainers
These are just some of the many people and jobs that are covered by the DBA. Essentially, anyone who is working on a contract approved by the U.S. Government and hurt while overseas on a military base should be covered.
Are the benefits provided by the Defense Base Act good?
The benefits that are provided by the DBA include medical and disability coverage. There are also death benefits available.
The DBA allows for anyone who suffers a total disability to receive up to two thirds of their average weekly wages. That is capped, and the cap may change annually.
Those with partial disabilities can seek adjusted compensation based on how severe their injuries are.
If the contractor passes away because of the injuries that they suffered, then the contractor’s child or spouse may receive half of the contractor’s weekly wage for the remainder of their lives. If there are two or more surviving members of the contractor’s family, then they can seek two-thirds of the contractor’s weekly wages.
If you’re hurt overseas and are working as a government contractor, make sure you understand how the DBA protects you and the benefits that it may provide. This is something to discuss with your client as well as your attorney, so you know what to expect as you focus on recovering from serious injuries. In the event that you pass away, your family can start a claim to seek compensation for that loss, so they are not left without an income as a result of your death.