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What You Need to Know About the Jones Act & How the Law Affects the US Navy


Posted in Get To Know Maritime Law on February 23, 2019


Since 1920, the Merchant Marine Act, also commonly known as the Jones Act, has protected shipyard workers as well as seamen working on ships and vessels traveling from American port to American port.

Your Gulf Coast maritime lawyers at Lapeze & Johns believe that it is important for you to fully understand the effects and reach of the Jones Act in protecting seamen from accidents and injuries, as well as the importance it plays in the safety of our national waterway transportation system.

The Stipulations

To better understand how the Jones Act affects the US Navy and national security, we need to be aware of the following stipulations of the law:

  • Ships transporting merchandise and products between American ports must be built in America and navigate under the American flag. The company in charge of the vessel must be American and the crew must be at least 75% American.
  • At least 90% of the steel used in repairs made on American ships must be made with American steel.
  • Companies managing American boats must have the required facilities to care for the vessels.

The restrictions placed within the Jones Act have helped to create a strong maritime infrastructure that can be effectively used by the United States Navy as well as access to private vessels that can provide assistance to the military as needed.

This aspect of the Jones Act is known as “dual use.”

The Importance of the Jones Act

The Jones Act allows for the development and construction of vessels that can be used by the American military to protect our national waterways during times of war or peace. It is also a critical component in the maintenance and repair of ships utilized by the US Navy.

There has been recent consideration to modify or even repeal the Jones Act, but its importance to national security cannot be so easily overlooked. The majority of US military equipment and supplies are moved by seafaring vessels from US ports to sites all over the world.

Your Gulf Coast maritime lawyers at Lapeze & Johns support the Jones Act as it provides legal protection for seamen that truly need it, as well as it’s dual use for the US Navy.

If you are a seaman that has been injured while on the job, know that your Houston maritime lawyers at Lapeze & Johns are ready to fight for you so that you can obtain the compensation you need to begin the process of recovery.

A proven history of success combined with a deep passion for achieving excellent results for our clients is what sets Lapeze & Johns apart from the rest.

Contact Lapeze & Johns today at 713.739.1010 to schedule your free case review.