Sometimes crew members develop additional injuries or illnesses while on sick leave. Often times these new injuries or illnesses have nothing to do with the shipboard accident which placed them on sick leave in the first place. The question on the minds of these crew member is does the cruise line or ship owner have to pay for the medical treatment of these new injuries or illnesses? The answer is YES.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) was passed to make businesses and recreational areas accessible to persons with disabilities. Though originally envisioned as a land-based statute, the Supreme Court in Spector v. Norwegian Cruise Line, Ltd. held the ADA applicable to any cruise ship leaving from an United States port. Overnight, the Spector case required the cruise industry to refit its ships to comply with the ADA including the accessibility standards set forth in the ADA Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities (ADAAG). Subsequent cases, however, recognized because of the uniqueness of ocean going vessels many ADAAG requirements, were specifically formulated for land-based structures, cannot practically apply to ships. As such, cruise ships are exempt from certain structural ADAAG requirements until such time as the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board issues specific standards for ships. However, courts found all other aspects of the ADA applicable to cruise ships. These include:
It is common knowledge that commercial fishing is the most dangerous and deadly job in the United States. Thankfully maritime law provides benefits to those who lost a loved one while working the sea.
Our lawyers routinely handle cases where the crew members’ conditions worsen or new injuries occur due to the substandard medical treatment of the doctors selected by their employers.
Several injuries occur each year due to the over serving of alcohol to passengers aboard cruise ships. Given the nature of maritime travel, an intoxicated passenger is a threat to the people around him as well as himself. In fact, many cruise ship accidents, sexual assaults and disappearances are alcohol related.