In Irby v. Blackwater Security Consulting, another recently jurisdiction case published by the Benefits Review Board, the BRB examined the meaning of “public work,” as the term is used in the DBA. Irby had an odd procedural history because the claimant-widow did not want coverage under the DBA, but instead wanted to pursue a wrongful death tort suit in state court following the death of her husband in Fallujah, Iraq. Nonetheless, the BRB determined that the decedent was covered by the DBA, which is an exclusive remedy statute. According to the BRB, the term “public work” includes construction projects or work connected with national defense, and decedent’s employment as a security contractor was a service contract that supported war activities.
(Note: I originally published this post on Navigable Waters: A Maritime, Longshore and Defense Base Act Blog.)