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Jones Act

What Is The Jones Act?

The Jones Act is officially titled the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, and it establishes protections for sailors. Prior to the Jones Act, sailors injured on the job had few options for recovering damages or getting assistance. The Jones Act recognized the inherent dangers of working at sea and the need to protect seamen. A Jones act lawyer can explain the far-reaching benefits for sailors.

  • Any sailor injured at sea is entitled to maintenance and cure (the sailor’s employer must pay a daily stipend and provide medical care).
  • Sailors can sue for damages if their injuries were caused by negligence on the part of the ship’s owners or other crew members, or if they sailed on unseaworthy vessels.
  • *Damages include death benefits, if a sailor is killed on the job.

Who Is Covered by the Jones Act?

  • Victims of situations that occur on the high seas and navigable waters, whether it’s on a shrimp boat, a ferry, a cruise ship or a barge
  • Oil rig workers on rigs not permanently affixed to the ocean floor
  • Anyone who spends at least 30% of his or her time in active service on a Merchant Marine vessel, including all staff on board ship, from the Captain on down

If you or one of your loved one has been injured while working at sea you must contact a Jones act lawyer now!

Legal Issues Concerning the Jones Act

The benefits provided by the Jones Act can be significantly higher than benefits for workers on land, if a skilled Jones Act lawyer is involved. The statute of limitations for suing someone in Texas for such an accident is two years, so it is important to act quickly after an incident occurs. Financial recovery can include personal property damage, present and future medical bills, mental pain and suffering damages, lost past and future wages, permanent impairment/disfigurement, punitive damages, wrongful death damages and loss of enjoyment of life.

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