What Is The Jones Act And How Does It Apply To Me?

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The Jones Act is a federal statute that applies to “seamen” who are more or less permanently assigned to a vessel at the time of their injury.  The Jones Act allows the injured employee to file a lawsuit directly against his company for any injuries which he may have suffered.

If you are able to file suit under the Jones Act as an injured seaman, you can seek all of your damages from your employer.  This includes not only pain and suffering damages but also past and future loss of wages and fringe benefits and past and future medical expenses.

The Jones Act is meant to be a very protective law.  As a seaman, your employer is required to provide you with a safe place to work, properly train you for the procedure that you are asked to perform, properly supervise you and provide you with a seaworthy vessel and proper equipment.  The Jones Act requires that your employer follow all of these laws.  If your employer fails to do so, you can file suit if you become injured as a result of such failure.

A final benefit to you under the Jones Act is that almost all Jones Act employers carry significant insurance to cover Jones Act claims.  Unlike automobile accidents which can often be caused by uninsured or underinsured individuals, a Jones Act claim typically has plenty of insurance coverage available to pay any damages under the law.  The main focus of most Jones Act claims is proving damages and negligence under the Jones Act.  Typically available insurance is more than adequate to cover any damages obtained through suit.

More info: Jones Act Law

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