What are my rights if I am injured on a foreign flagged vessel?
If you’re a passenger on a cruise ship, and almost all of, as a matter of fact, other than the Hawaiian cruise line, all of the cruise lines sailing out of the United States are foreign flagged vessels. If the cruise started or ends in the United States, you’ll have received the ticket contract which will set forth which law will apply. And it’s generally the general maritime law of the United States.
If you’re a crew member serving aboard a foreign flagged vessel, there will be what is known as a choice of law test where we will look at the context that you, the ship, and the shipowner and or employer have with the United States. And if the shipowner is based in the United States, odds are that the Jones Act and the general maritime law of unseaworthiness and maintenance and cure will apply to your claim.