Commercial Divers & Jones Act?
Commercial divers may or may not be covered by the Jones Act. ( 46 U.S.C. Sec 688) Coverage depends on many factors including the place of the accident, relationship to the employer ( contractual or independent contractor), where inland or offshore, type of vessel or platform the dive did the dive originate, whether the diver was injured or killed beyond territorial waters ( 3 miles), whether other entities, persons, or companies were partially negligent, was the injured or killed diver a member of the crew of a vessel or was the injured diver qualifies as a Jones Act seaman.
Any commercial diver injured offshore should be very careful to not commit or admit to a position of employment status or designation without first consulting with an attorney. Often times the employers will try and convince the worker that they are covered by workers compensation or the longshore and harbor workers act (LHWCA) and not entitled to the benefits of recovery under the Jones Act and later upon discovery of all of the facts, the true seaman status of the injured commercial diver is revealed. Incorrect admissions to designations of employment or duties can seriously damage your Jones Act Claim and other potential third party claims against other non-employers or claims under the Death on the High Seas Act. (DOHSA)