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Old August 20th, 2012, 10:06 AM
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Default Jones Act ruling

Does this mean a cruise line may not be responsible for their crew/employees actions?

"...Jones Act employers will not be held responsible for all acts of employees simply because they occur on a vessel during work hours."

Fifth Circuit Decision Defines Course and Scope of Jones Act Employment | Maritime News | Maritime Executive Magazine
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Old August 20th, 2012, 10:27 AM
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Cruise lines come under the PVSA which is different. But who knows how far this ruling is carried. Would highy doubt it though.
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Old August 20th, 2012, 03:27 PM
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Default Jones Act

The decision of the Court stated, “...the test for whether a Jones Act employee was acting within the course and scope of his employment is whether his actions at the time of the injury were in furtherance of his employer’s business interests.” The Fifth Circuit explained that the Jones Act does not create a strict liability scheme whereby the employer is liable for all actions of its employees which occur aboard the vessel.

That seems to be to be reasonable. It would seem, for example, to help remove liability for rape by a crew member unless there was some proof conditions aboard the ship enhanced the opportunity. Of course the courts will fight over the details for years.

Actually I think cruise lines do come under the Jones Act. It is often cited as the reason for calling at foreign ports, and that is incorrect, that is the Passenger Service Act. But I believe the Jones Act covers all vessels calling at American ports.
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Old August 20th, 2012, 04:18 PM
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Merchant Marine Act of 1920 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There's a section of the Merchant Marine Act (Jones Act) that talks about Seaman's Rights. I'm thinking that's what this ruling is referring to.

The PVSA came into effect in 1886

Passenger Vessel Services Act of 1886 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Whether the Marine Act actually includes part of the PVSA, I don't know. The whole thing makes my head hurt but I do think the ruling is part of the Seaman's rights part and is in no way aimed at Cruise Ships.
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Old August 22nd, 2012, 01:25 PM
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Question Cruise lines and PVSA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trackypup View Post
Merchant Marine Act of 1920 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There's a section of the Merchant Marine Act (Jones Act) that talks about Seaman's Rights. I'm thinking that's what this ruling is referring to.

The PVSA came into effect in 1886

Passenger Vessel Services Act of 1886 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Whether the Marine Act actually includes part of the PVSA, I don't know. The whole thing makes my head hurt but I do think the ruling is part of the Seaman's rights part and is in no way aimed at Cruise Ships.
The story I have often heard, and it makes a great deal of sense, is that cruise lines are afraid to go after changing the provisions of the PVSA, for fear that it would open them up to scrutiny and soon expose them to OSHA, ADA, minimum wage, and other things they do not want to get involved with.
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Old August 22nd, 2012, 02:23 PM
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The story I have often heard, and it makes a great deal of sense, is that cruise lines are afraid to go after changing the provisions of the PVSA, for fear that it would open them up to scrutiny and soon expose them to OSHA, ADA, minimum wage, and other things they do not want to get involved with.
Exactly. And last time it was looked at was to make it stronger, not weaker. I think they'd rather leave it alone.
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Old August 22nd, 2012, 06:40 PM
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The US Government also does not want to get involved with any changes.
The laws and regulations of the PVSA and Jones Act have also been extended to airliners.
If the laws are weakened to any extent, all of America's airline companies will be history, and you will be flying (with lower fares and better service) China Southeastern Airlines between Chicago and Ft Lauderdale.

Not that it is such a bad idea - unless you happen to work for United, Delta, or American Airlines, or are a stockholder in these companies.
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Old August 22nd, 2012, 07:18 PM
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Is this what people are talking about when they say, "You've been Jonsed?"
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Old August 22nd, 2012, 08:25 PM
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The Jones Act is largely focused on seamen, defined as spending 30% or more of their time on the vessel where they work. Much of the law is about cabotage which requires carriers of good strictly between US ports to ne US-flagged, etc.

But other parts of the Act pertain to the rights of seamen, and whether or not they are American doesn't seem to change the rights afforded to them in US maritime courts.

Where this ruling says not everything a seaman does while he is onboard a ship is the responsibility of the company owners - even if it occurs while he is "on duty" (by the way, it is pretty hard to define whether a lot of cruise ship workers are on or off duty - especially hosts, cruise directors, etc.) is interesting.

The ruling says that even if a seaman does something harmful, responsibility for his act does not automatically revert to the company even if he is on duty at the time. It reverts only if the act was intended to be done for the benefit of the company.
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