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Category Archives: Jones Act

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UPDATE: Punitive Damages for Jones Act Seamen are not “Pining for the Fjords, they’re Dead”!

Posted in Jones Act

On September 25, 2014, the en banc Fifth Circuit, in McBride v. Estis Well Serv., L.L.C., No. 12-30714 (5th Cir. Sept. 25, 2014), concluded in a brief opinion that the Supreme Court’s decision of Miles v. Apex Marine Corp., 498 U.S. 19 (1990), and its limitation on recovery to pecuniary damages, precluded Jones Act seamen… Continue Reading

Land-Based Jones Act Seaman Status, Emotional Damages, and the “Zone of Danger”

Posted in Jones Act

Fifth Circuit Affirms Jury Finding for Land-Based Worker to be Covered by Jones Act but Reverses Award of Emotional Damages in Naquin v. Elevating Boats LLC, No. 12-31258 (5th Cir., 3/10/14) Plaintiff, Larry Naquin, Sr., a vessel repair supervisor employed by Elevating Boats, LLC, was injured on November 17, 2009, when a shipyard crane he… Continue Reading

But I’m Not Dead Yet! Punitive Damages for Unseaworthiness Claims Live On

Posted in Jones Act, Maritime Accidents

The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals recently concluded that Jones Act seamen can recover punitive damages for their employer’s willful and wanton breach of the general maritime duty to provide a seaworthy vessel, in McBride v. Estis Well Serv., L.L.C., No. 12 – 30714 (5th Cir. Oct. 2, 2013). The jurisprudential history behind this result… Continue Reading

I’ll Take “Not a Vessel” for $600, Alex: What Is a Tension Leg Platform?

Posted in Jones Act, LHWCA, Offshore Oil

In the wake of the revisited tests of vessel status by the Supreme Court in Stewart vs. Dutra Construction Company, 543 U.S. 481 (2005) and Lozman v. City of Riviera Beach, Fla., 133 S.Ct. 735 (2013), it remains to be seen whether floating oil and gas production structures, such as SPARS and tension leg platforms (“TLP”),… Continue Reading

Jones Act Status Remains Unavailable on SPARS

Posted in Jones Act, Offshore Oil

Jones Act status remains unavailable on SPAR Platforms, a type of deepwater floating oil drilling and production facility used in the offshore petroleum industry. While, as noted in the recent blog by Joseph Devall, Jr., the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) contemplates a further “clarification” of the term “vessel,” the Fifth Circuit has reiterated that, even in light… Continue Reading

If in Doubt, File the Complaint for Limitation of Liability

Posted in Jones Act, Marine Services, Maritime Contracts, Ports & Cargo Shipping

One of the recurring issues in handling maritime wrongful death and personal injury claims is determining what information is sufficient to start the vessel owner’s six-month deadline to file a complaint seeking exoneration or limitation of liability under the Shipowners’ Limitation of Liability Act, 46 U.S.C. § 30501 et seq. from that claim.  It is… Continue Reading

U.S. Fifth Circuit Clarifies the Role of the Collateral Source Rule with a Seaman’s Recovery of Cure

Posted in Jones Act, Marine Services, Ports & Cargo Shipping

A recurring issue in personal injury litigation is the amount of medical expenses a plaintiff is entitled to recover from the defendant.  The health care providers charge or bill the plaintiff for the treatment provided, but typically accept as payment in full significantly less from health insurers or the government.  The health insurers or government… Continue Reading

Coast Guard to Review Jones Act Vessel Citizenship Requirements

Posted in Jones Act, Marine Services

In an action that may signal future changes to vessel documentation requirements for publicly traded companies, the U.S. Coast Guard published a Notice in the Federal Register November 3 seeking comments on mechanisms currently employed by such companies in order to assure compliance with U.S. citizenship requirements. At least 75% of the stock or other… Continue Reading