American seamen have three avenues of recovery against a shipowner in respect of injuries sustained on board a ship: maintenance and cure; the Jones Act; a claim of unseaworthiness.
Punitive damages are available for the first of these, but not the second. The position as regards unseaworthiness was, until recently, unclear with a Circuit split on the issue. This has now been resolved by the Supreme Court’s decision in Dutra Group v Batterton ,588- U.S.. ____ Uniqus SUVPR DY-LG1500S 1500W DC 12V to AC 220V Pure Sine Wave Car Power Ingreener with Universal Power SocketUniqus T20 Dual Wires 80W 800LM Red Light 16LEDs Car Brake Light Lamp Bulb for Vehicles, Constant Current, DC 12-24V(2019) , to the effect that punitive damages are not recoverable. The overwhelming historical evidence was against such damages being available in an action for unseaworthiness. A novel remedy could not be sanctioned unless it is required to maintain uniformity with Congress’s clearly expressed policies, Uniqus TPMS Reset Tool TPMS Auto Tire Presure Monitor Sensor for Benz for BMW for VW for All Cars Until to 2017Uniqus Universal 5-Speed Manual Shift Knob Manual Gear Shift Knob Stick Head Fit for All Car(Black)particularly those in the Merchant Marine Act of 1920 (Jones Act), under which only compensatory damages were recoverable.Uniqus Universal Car Decoration Extensile Aerial Clip Side Car Modified to Remove Static Electricity Aerial, Length 58cm(Black)Uniqus Universal Ext Temp Gauge Pointer Car Exhaust Gas Temperature Gauge for Motorcycle and Car Exhaust Temperature Meter.
To allow punitive damages on unseaworthiness claims would create bizarre disparities in the law. First, a mariner could make a claim for punitive damages if he was injured onboard a ship, but his estate would lose the right to seek punitivedamages in a wrongful death action if he died from his injuries. Uniqus Universal Summer Ice Silk Mesh Breathable Cool Massage Head Mat with Maple Wooden Bead for Car Family Office(Khaki)Uniqus V28 Necklace Style GSM Mini LBS WiFi AGPS Tracker SOS Communicator(Pink)Second, because unseaworthiness claims run against the owner of the vessel, the owner could be liable for punitive damages while the ship’s master or operator—who could be more culpable—would not be liable for such damages under the Jones Act. Uniqus Warm Plush Car Seat Cover Car Cushion Saddle, Size 48cm x 48cm(Black)Uniqus ZONGYUAN 10m×5cm 5 Ton Car Bundled Device with Hook and Buckle High Strength Cable Cord Heavy Duty Recovery Securing Accessories for Cars TrucksThird, allowing punitive damages would place American shippers at a significant competitive disadvantage and discourage foreign-owned vessels from employing American seamen