Admiralty and Maritime Law FAQ

What are admiralty and maritime laws?
These are the laws that govern virtually every type of event that can happen on the ocean or inland lakes and rivers.

What are the main maritime and admiralty laws?
There are three main maritime and admiralty laws: the Jones Act, the Death on the High Seas Act, and the Longshoreman and Dock Workers Compensation Act. Each of these laws deals with a specific area or maritime law.

What is the Jones Act?
The Jones Act is a law that sets up the provisions for injured seaman and sailors to collect compensation for lost work and medical bills.

Is the Jones Act workers compensation?
Although many of the provisions of the Jones Act are similar to standard workers compensation laws it is different in several key ways – namely that payment is not drawn from a central fund and injured workers must show that their injury is due to the liability, negligence, or conditions on their vessel.

What is the Death on the High Seas Act (DOHSA)?
The DOHSA is legislation that allows people to collect damages for their loved ones lost in international waters.

What kind of damages can family members collect?
Families and loved ones can collect the economic damages suffered due to loss of income, and can also sometimes receive compensation for emotional trauma.

What is the Longshoremen and Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA)?
The LHWCA is a collection of laws that determine the benefits for land-based maritime workers who are injured on the job.

What is the Seaman Status Test?
The Seaman Status Test is a set of guidelines that determine if a worker is covered by maritime law or is simply a land based employee working on the water.