Associated With:
Super Lawyers
American Association for Justice
AV Preeminent
National lawyers
WSAJ Eagle 2023

Merchant Mariners


Seattle and Tacoma are hubs for maritime commerce and attract cargo ships from around the world. Merchant Mariners work as able-bodied seamen, mates, pilots, engineers, or captains of cargo ships, oil tankers, supply ships, car carriers, and many other types of vessels that deliver cargo and goods to port. On the West Coast, many merchant mariners are members of the Seafarers International Union (SIU), the Sailors’ Union of the Pacific (SUP), American Maritime Officers, Marine Engineers Beneficial Association, International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots, and the Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific. Our lawyers are proud to have represented injured members of merchant mariner unions for decades.

65 Years of Maritime Injury Experience Working for You

The lawyers of Kraft Davies Olsson PLLC have over 65 years of experience in maritime personal injury cases helping injured merchant mariners seek financial recoveries following serious injuries at sea. We understand the important and dangerous work of merchant mariners, the heavy equipment and lines involved, the long hours, heavy seas, and have represented crew members injured under a variety of circumstances. Because of our experience in many merchant marine cases, it is likely that we have handled a case similar to yours in the past and will be able to apply our knowledge from other cases to benefit your case.

Jones Act Benefits for Merchant Mariners

Under the federal Jones Act, an injured merchant mariner can recover damages for pain and suffering, disability, lost wages, retraining costs, and other damages related to an injury. In order to recover these damages, however, the merchant mariner must show that the injury was caused, at least in part, by the negligence of the worker’s employer, the negligence of a co-employee, defective equipment, or some other unsafe work condition or practice on the ship. Employers have a duty to provide merchant mariners with a safe place to work, equipment that is fit for the work to be done, and safe access to and from the ship.

Because workers’ compensation does not apply to merchant mariners working on ships on the water, it is important to consult with an experienced maritime injury attorney in the wake of an injury who can investigate the specific facts of your case. A prompt investigation is important to determine the root cause of the incident, whether any company policies or industry standards were violated, locate and interview any important witnesses, and to preserve any physical evidence important to the case. Our lawyers are available to meet with you immediately to begin conducting a prompt and careful investigation into the facts of your injury.

Free Case Evaluation for Merchant Mariners

We offer a free initial case evaluation for injured merchant mariners to discuss the specific facts of your case and answer your questions about the Jones Act and other aspects of maritime injury law. We accept cases on contingent fee, which means that we don’t get paid an attorneys’ fee unless we make a financial recovery for you.