Jones Act, Unseaworthiness Claims

An important trait of the jones act, is that there are many avenues to recover damages outlined for injured maritime workers. One of its functions is to hold negligent employers responsible for injuries sustained in the unsafe work conditions. Another function of the Jones Act is to hold vessel owners responsible for damages related to injuries on a vessel that was unseaworthy at the time of the accident. In some cases a separate claim for compensation of damages can be filed against the owner of the vessel. It is important to note that an unseaworthiness claim must be filed against the owner of the vessel, even if it is owned by a person or a company other than your employer.

Vessel owners are responsible for providing a safe and secure ship for those who work aboard the vessel.

A seaworthy ship must:

  • Be adequately prepared to operate at sea
  • Have precautions taken to prevent accidents from occurring
  • Ensure there are procedures and equipment in place to assist with accidents or injuries in the event one does take place.

Common claims of unseaworthiness include:

  • Flawed work procedures
  • Poor vessel design
  • Flimsy or Unstable vessel structures
  • Wet, Slippery, or generally unsafe walking surfaces
  • Incompetent crew
  • Insufficient training of crew
  • Understaffed vessel
  • Insubstantial Food or Supplies
  • Faulty or Damaged Machinery and Tools
  • Insufficient firefighting equipment
  • Insufficient lifesaving equipment for all crew members

These are typical claims for unseaworthiness. Hiring a qualified maritime lawyer who can help you decide if an unseaworthiness claim should be filed along with your negligent employer claim is the first step to getting the compensation you are entitled. Carabin Shaw has a qualified, experienced team of attorneys that will work for you to protect your interests. If you have been injured in the service of a Maritime Vessel or while performing other maritime duties, contact Carabin Shaw day or night, 7 days a week for a free consultation. 1.800.862.1260

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