"When I seek professional advice, I don’t want B.S. I want it straight up, with no double talk. I figure you do also. I always use plain English, with no sugarcoating, no B.S. lawyer talk, and no double talk - just old fashioned, unsweetened, unvarnished truth - just the way that I want it." Maritime Attorney/Jones Act Lawyer - Bill Turley
My Best Advice
Always tell the truth. Always. Nothing is more important in your case then telling the truth. Your credibility with the judge all depends on your honesty. If a judge believes you are not being truthful, then the Judge will not be on your side. Do not make this mistake.
You have to be brutally honest about everything. It is the best thing you can do in helping you win your Jones Act Case.
How Do I Know?
I have handled Jones Act Cases since 1987. I have gained a lot of knowledge on these types of cases. My goal is to help injured seamen earn the money they lawfully deserve.
America's Cup Jones Act Lawyer - Lawsuits For Injuries/ Deaths : America’s Cup Sailors & Crew Members
Are America’s Cup Crew Members Covered By The Jones Act?
The America’s Cup is the sailing world's elite regatta. The excitement and thrill of participating in the world’s oldest and most well funded sailing regatta can turn dangerous and at times, deadly. The sea can be unforgiving and hazardous to professional sailors. Adding unproven designs to carbon fiber with speed can result in tragedy. Recently, there has been scepticism as to the safety of the new boat’s designs.
I was recently asked whether crew members for America’s Cup syndicates are eligible for Jones Act benefits. After all, seaman have the most powerful workplace rights and remedies of any employees in America.
The short answer is “Yes, America’s Cup crew members may be able to recover under the Jones Act.” I know this because I have successfully brought Jones Act cases against America’s Cup syndicates. For example, in one case, at the helm of the vessel was one of the most famous sailors in the world. We were able to prove the vessel was unseaworthy and the employer was negligent. Importantly, the insurance company paid very significant money to settle the case.
If you are a crew member - - Helmsman, Trimmer, Grinder, or Tactician - - you probably qualify for what is called Jones Act Seaman Status. This is the test under maritime law in order to qualify for powerful Jones Act rights and remedies. In addition, chase boat drivers, tender driver and crew members and the like probably qualify for Jones Act Seaman Status. (More here on Seaman Status).
You might read that you need to spend 30% of your total work time aboard the vessel in order to qualify for Seaman Status. However, don’t get thrown off by this 30% stuff if you don’t actually spend that much of your total work time aboard the vessel. For example, if you are injured while aboard a vessel and you don’t spend 30% of your total work time on the water, you probably qualify as a Sieracki Seaman. This is different than a Jones Act Seaman - but you can still recover all the same damages that a Jones Act Seaman can recover.
For example, you can be a boat builder, machinist, rigger, sail maker, designer, engineer, or support member and still qualify as a Sieracki Seaman.
You don’t have to be part of an American based team in order to qualify for powerful Jones Act Seaman’s rights and remedies. For example, if you are injured or a family member was killed on U.S. waters - you can still bring a lawsuit in the United States. For example, if an America’s Cup team member is injured or killed in California waters, they can bring a case in California State Court, under what is called savings to suitors.
Assumption of the risk is not a defense
Under maritime law, assumption of the risk is not a defense. Meaning, that just because you agree to sail on an America’s Cup boat doesn’t mean that you assume the risk of an unseaworthy design or accept the risk that sailing is dangerous.
Disclaimer: Please understand these discussions and/or examples are not legal advice. All legal situations are different. This testimonial, endorsement and/or discussion does not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter, your particular case/ situation and/or this particular case/ situation. Thanks, Bill Turley