Determining Jones Act Seaman Status
Many clients who work offshore believe they are a Jones Act seaman because they were injured on somy type of vessel: a barge, a jack-up rig, a crew boat, or some other vessel. That is only partially true but is definitely not the test that the law demands to establish seaman status. Reduced their basics, the tests are known as the "location" and the "connection" tests. First the location test requires that the person must have been injured on a vessel while it was in navigable waters. Second, the connection test has two parts: (a) the general features of the incident were potentially disruptive to maritime commerce, and (b) the general character of the activity shows a substantial relationship to a traditional maritime activity.
Clearly, these are complex legal issues that are fact specific to the particular case. There is no clear, easy answer to these questions. If you believe that you are a Jones Act seaman who suffered a serious injury, you must consult with an experienced maritime (admiralty) attorney. The attorneys at the Law Office of Richard Kennedy have more than fifty (50) years experience in handling Jones Act, maritime, and other personal injury cases. We will be happy to meet and discuss your case with you, do the necessary legal and factual investigation, and then give you our best advice based on the law and the facts of your case.