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Tag Archives: U.S. Fifth Circuit

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

The Further Adventures of the Fifth Circuit and the LHWCA Jurisdiction Test

Posted in LHWCA

On Tuesday, October 8, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in BPU Management, Inc. v DOWCP (Donald Morgan) again addressed jurisdictional coverage under The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA). Following on the heels of New Orleans Depot Services, Inc., (NODSI) v. DOWCP, 718 Fed. 3rd 384, 387 (5th… 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

Don’t You Forget About Me . . . Include Insurers in List of Indemnified Groups

Posted in Maritime Contracts

How many insureds entering into a master service agreement (“MSA”) go to bat for their insurers when negotiating who will compromise the members of their respective indemnified “Groups?” Given a recent decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (“Fifth Circuit”), Duval v. Northern Assurance Company of America, __ F.3d __, 2013 WL 3367483 (5th Cir…. Continue Reading

Fifth Circuit Narrows “Adjoining Area” Definition in LHWCA Jurisdiction Test

Posted in LHWCA

On April 29, 2013, the Fifth Circuit issued an opinion for the en banc Court in New Orleans Depot Services, Inc. v. Director OWCP, 718 F.3d 384 (5th Cir. 2013) that effectively reformulated the 1972 situs jurisdictional requirement under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA), 33 U.S.C. sec. 901 et.seq. The Court now… Continue Reading

Termination for Misconduct Does Not Reopen LHWCA Claim, Fifth Circuit Follows Fourth Circuit in Deciding

Posted in LHWCA

The Fifth Circuit has followed the Fourth Circuit’s lead in deciding today that an employee’s termination for misconduct will not reopen a disability claim under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (“LHWCA”). The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in an unpublished opinion issued on March 19, 2013, addressed the employer’s… 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

The Fifth Circuit Restates Three Duties Vessel Owners Owe Longshore Employees

Posted in LHWCA, Ports & Cargo Shipping

Under Section 905(b) of the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (“LHWCA”), a vessel owner owes three duties to longshore employees. In October 2012, the Fifth Circuit granted a summary judgment dismissing serious personal injury claims a cargo supervisor filed under LHWCA because the defendants had not breached any of these three duties. In doing… 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

When No Privity of Contract Qualifies as “Any Contractual Relationship” under OPA

Posted in Marine Services, Maritime Contracts

Transactions to procure supplies for vessels engaged in international trade typically involve numerous international and local brokers, agents and contractors.  The vessel operator or charterer will place an order for supplies with a broker.  The broker locates a seller with the best price and reputation in the vicinity of the vessel.  The seller makes arrangements… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Extends the Scope of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act Landward

Posted in Marine Services, Maritime Contracts, Offshore Oil, Ports & Cargo Shipping

The United States Supreme Court, in Pacific Operators Offshore, LLP v. Valladolid, concluded that the widow of an employee who suffered fatal injuries on shore may still recover LHWCA benefits pursuant to OCSLA if her husband’s death had a “substantial nexus” to his employer’s oil and gas operations on the OCS.  This is an unexpected… 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

Fifth Circuit Focuses on Manning Requirements and Charter Arrangements for Foreign Floating Rigs

Posted in Marine Services, Offshore Oil

The U.S. Fifth Circuit, in Brown v. Offshore Specialty Fabricators, Inc., No. 10-40936 (Nov. 23, 2011), recently addressed the confluence of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”), the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (“OCSLA”), the Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”), and “foreign control” exemptions from the OCSLA manning requirements that had been issued… Continue Reading