The Maritime Law Association of the United States has recently included an article about a case handled by BBR in its annual publication. Founded in 1899, the MLA comprises of maritime lawyers, judges, admiralty law professors, and non-lawyers who are selected because they hold responsible positions in the maritime field and have rendered distinguished service in the advancement of maritime law or its administration. Each year the association publishes its annual report which highlights the more significant cases decided that year facing the practice of maritime law.
The article entitled Exception Recognized to Arbitration of Seaman’s Claim highlights a case where BBR successfully defeated Carnival Cruise Line’s attempt to dismiss an injured crew member’s lawsuit and require his claim to be decided by an arbitrator as opposed to a jury of his peers. This case involved a tragic accident of an engineering officer who was blinded in both eyes when the caustic solution he was ordered to mix for the cruise ship’s desalinization plant blew up in his face. By arguing that the contract requiring arbitration was signed only by an employment company, not Carnival, BBR successfully convinced the Federal Court sitting in Miami, Florida to deny the cruise line’s motion. The case currently is being litigated and is awaiting trial.
If you are a crew member working aboard a cruise ship and would like to know more about your rights, feel free to contact our firm for a free consultation with one of our Florida Board Certified Admiralty & Maritime Lawyers.