Why You Need MEL

The water of marine employers liability insurance can be murky at times. However, if you own or operate a commercial vessel on navigatable waters, you should have it. Under federal law, masters and crew members are not limited to statutory compensation acts and have the right to sue their employers for injuries received while on the job.

To Whom Does It Apply?

The term “seaman” can differ from the definition that would apply under ordinary maritime law for the purposes of Jones Act coverage. It is always a question of fact and is usually resolved by applying the following criteria:

  • A seaman must have a substantial relationship to a vessel in terms of both time and kind.
  • The vessel must navigate and operate as a commercial vessel or capable of transporting passengers in navigable waters.
  • A worker’s duties must add to the vessel’s function and aid in the accomplishment of the vessel’s mission. However, the worker does not have to be on board when the harm happens.

What Operations Need Coverage?

Companies performing the following operations would need marine employers liability.

  • Engineering/Research/Educational
  • Local County Transportation
  • Seismic Activity
  • Security & Guard Services
  • Fishery Observers
  • Dry Dock Maintenance
  • Sea Trials
  • Onsite Medical Support
  • Nonprofit activities
  • Line handling/Minor vessel repairs
  • Installation of Marine safety equipment
  • Marina operators & Boat repairs

Having a marine employers liability policy can bring peace of mind to any vessel operator.