The Jones Act & Maritime Law

In order to be covered under the Jones Act, you must meet the definition of a seaman. A Jones Act seaman spends a substantial amount of his or her time contributing to the overall purpose or mission of a vessel or fleet of vessels in navigation. Essentially, this means that if you spend most of your time working offshore on a boat, ship, rig or other vessel, you most likely have rights under the Jones Act.

Are you considered a Jones Act Seaman or Land-Based Worker?

Seaman status depends largely on the nature and duration of an individual’s activities onboard a given vessel. This is to differentiate between sea-based workers, who work almost exclusively on the water, and land-based workers who have only a temporary or transitory connection to a vessel in navigation.

Generally, you are considered a Jones Act seaman if you work on a:

  • Tugboat;
  • Tanker;
  • Commercial Fishing Boat;
  • Barge;
  • Supply Boat;
  • Cargo Ship;
  • Jack-up Rig or
  • semi-submersible

Generally, you are not considered a Jones Act seaman if you are a:

  • Pilot;
  • Longshoreman or
  • Work on a Fixed Platform

Those not considered Jones Act seamen may still have legal remedies under the Longshoreman and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) or General Maritime Law.

Call 1-888-302-3838 or click here for a free, confidential case consultation with one of our Experienced Maritime Lawyers

If you or a loved one were injured while working offshore, the experienced and dedicated Jones Act lawyers at Zehl & Associates will devote whatever resources are necessary to ensuring that you are fully compensated for your injuries so that you and your family can focus on the future—and not on how you’re going to pay for it.


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