[USC02] 46 USC Ch. 103: FOREIGN AND INTERCOASTAL VOYAGES
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46 USC Ch. 103: FOREIGN AND INTERCOASTAL VOYAGES
From Title 46—SHIPPINGSubtitle II—Vessels and SeamenPart G—Merchant Seamen Protection and Relief

CHAPTER 103—FOREIGN AND INTERCOASTAL VOYAGES

Sec.
10301.
Application.
10302.
Shipping articles agreements.
10303.
Provisions.
10304.
Form of agreement.
10305.
Manner of signing agreement.
10306.
Exhibiting merchant mariners' documents.
10307.
Posting agreements.
10308.
Foreign engagements.
10309.
Engaging seamen to replace those lost by desertion or casualty.
10310.
Discharge.
10311.
Certificates of discharge.
10312.
Settlements on discharge.
10313.
Wages.
10314.
Advances.
10315.
Allotments.
10316.
Trusts.
10317.
Loss of lien and right to wages.
10318.
Wages on discharge in foreign ports.
10319.
Costs of a criminal conviction.
10320.
Records of seamen.
10321.
General penalty.

        

§10301. Application

(a) Except as otherwise specifically provided, this chapter applies to a vessel of the United States—

(1) on a voyage between a port in the United States and a port in a foreign country (except a port in Canada, Mexico, or the West Indies); or

(2) of at least 75 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title on a voyage between a port of the United States on the Atlantic Ocean and a port of the United States on the Pacific Ocean.


(b) This chapter does not apply to a vessel on which the seamen are entitled by custom or agreement to share in the profit or result of a voyage or to riding gang members.

(c) Unless otherwise provided, this chapter does not apply to a foreign vessel.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 561; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §737, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3941; Pub. L. 109–241, title III, §312(c)(2), July 11, 2006, 120 Stat. 533.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10301 46:564

46:566

46:574

Section 10301 specifies that vessels on foreign and intercoastal voyages (except for fishing vessels and foreign vessels) are subject to the seamen protection and relief provisions contained in chapter 103.

Amendments

2006—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 109–241 inserted "or to riding gang members" after "voyage".

1996—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted "as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title" after "75 gross tons".

§10302. Shipping articles agreements

(a) The owner, charterer, managing operator, master, or individual in charge shall make a shipping agreement in writing with each seaman before the seaman commences employment.

(b) The agreement shall contain the following:

(1) the nature, and, as far as practicable, the duration of the intended voyage, and the port or country in which the voyage is to end.

(2) the number and description of the crew and the capacity in which each seaman is to be engaged.

(3) the time at which each seaman is to be on board to begin work.

(4) the amount of wages each seaman is to receive.

(5) regulations about conduct on board, and information on fines, short allowance of provisions, and other punishment for misconduct provided by law.

(6) a scale of the provisions that are to be provided each seaman.

(7) any stipulation in reference to advances and allotments of wages.

(8) other matters not contrary to law.


(c) Each shipping agreement must be signed by the master or individual in charge or a representative of the owner, charterer, or managing operator, and by each seaman employed.

(d) The owner, charterer, managing operator, master, or individual in charge shall maintain the shipping agreement and make the shipping agreement available to the seaman.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 561; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §401, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2435.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10302 46:564

Section 10302 requires the master to make a shipping agreement with each crew member and lists the information that must be included in the agreement.

Amendments

1993—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 103–206, §401(1), amended subsec. (a) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (a) read as follows: "Before proceeding on a voyage, the master of a vessel to which this chapter applies shall make a shipping articles agreement in writing with each seaman in the crew."

Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 103–206, §401(2), added subsecs. (c) and (d).

§10303. Provisions

(a) A seaman shall be served at least 3 meals a day that total at least 3,100 calories, including adequate water and adequate protein, vitamins, and minerals in accordance with the United States Recommended Daily Allowances.

(b) The text of subsection (a) of this section shall be included in the agreement required by section 10302 of this title. A copy of the text also shall be posted in a conspicuous place in the galley and forecastle of each vessel.

(c) This section does not apply to a fishing or whaling vessel or a yacht.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 562.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10303 46:713

Section 10303 requires that seamen be served adequate food and water and that the text of this requirement be posted in the galley. The provisions do not apply to fishing vessels, whaling vessels, or yachts.

§10304. Form of agreement

The form of the agreement required by section 10302 of this title shall be in substance as follows:

United States of America

(Date and place of first signature of agreement):

It is agreed between the master and seamen of the         , of which              is at present master, or whoever shall go for master, now bound from the port of            to            (here the voyage is to be described, and the places named at which the vessel is to touch, or if that cannot be done, the general nature and probable length of the voyage is to be stated).

The seamen agree to conduct themselves in an orderly, faithful, honest, and sober manner, and to be at all times diligent in their respective duties, and to be obedient to the lawful commands of the master, or of an individual who lawfully succeeds the master, and of their superior officers in everything related to the vessel, and the stores and cargo of the vessel, whether on board, in boats, or on shore. In consideration of this service by the seamen to be performed, the master agrees to pay the crew, as wages, the amounts beside their names respectively expressed, and to supply them with provisions according to the annexed scale.

It is agreed that any embezzlement, or willful or negligent destruction of any part of the vessel's cargo or stores, shall be made good to the owner out of the wages of the person guilty of the embezzlement or destruction.

If an individual holds himself or herself out as qualified for a duty which the individual proves incompetent to perform, the individual's wages shall be reduced in proportion to the incompetency.

It also is agreed that if a seaman considers himself or herself to be aggrieved by any breach of this agreement or otherwise, the seaman shall present the complaint to the master or officer in charge of the vessel, in a quiet and orderly manner, who shall take steps that the case requires.

It also is agreed that (here any other stipulations may be inserted to which the parties agree, and that are not contrary to law).

In witness whereof, the parties have subscribed their names to this agreement, on the dates beside their respective signatures.

Signed by             , master, on the          day of         , nineteen hundred and            .


Signature of seaman
Time of service:
Birthplace
  Months
Age
  Days
Height:
Hospital money
  Feet
Whole wages
  Inches
Wages due
Description:
Place and time of entry
  Complexion
Time at which seaman is to
  Hair
 be on board
Wages each month
In what capacity
Wages each voyage
Allotment payable to
Advance wages
Conduct qualifications
Amount of monthly
 allotment

        

Note.—In the place for signature and descriptions of individuals engaged after the first departure of the vessel, the entries are to be made as above, except that the signature of the consul or vice consul, customs officer, or witness before whom the individual is engaged, is to be entered.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 562; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §402, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10304 46:713

Section 10304 provides the form of the shipping articles of agreement. While the exact format need not be followed, the form that is used must contain all the pertinent elements.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 struck out "Shipping commissioner's signature or initials" immediately below "In what capacity" in the form.

§10305. Manner of signing agreement

The agreement required by section 10302 of this title shall be signed—

(1) first by the master and dated at that time, after which each seaman shall sign; and

(2) in the presence of the master or individual in charge.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 563; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §403, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10305 46:565

Section 10305 describes the procedures for signing the shipping agreement, and for keeping official records of the agreement. It also requires that the agreement include a statement that the seaman understand its provisions, and did so while sober.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 struck out "(a)" before "The agreement", substituted "the master or individual in charge" for "a shipping commissioner" in par. (2), and struck out subsecs. (b) and (c) which read as follows:

"(b) When the crew is first engaged, the agreement shall be signed in duplicate. One of the copies shall be retained by the shipping commissioner. The other copy shall contain space for the description and signatures of seamen engaged subsequent to the first making of the agreement, and shall be delivered to the master.

"(c) An agreement signed before a shipping commissioner shall be acknowledged and signed by the commissioner on the agreement in the manner and form prescribed by regulation. The acknowledgment and certification shall include a statement by the commissioner that the seaman—

"(1) has read the agreement;

"(2) is acquainted with and understands its conditions; and

"(3) has signed it freely and voluntarily when sober."

§10306. Exhibiting merchant mariners' documents

Before signing the agreement required by section 10302 of this title, each individual required by section 8701 of this title to have a merchant mariner's document shall exhibit to the master or individual in charge a document issued to the individual, appropriately endorsed for the capacity in which the individual is to serve.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 564; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §404, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10306 46:643(c)

Section 10306 requires a seaman to exhibit an appropriately endorsed merchant mariner's document to the shipping commissioner before signing a shipping agreement. When a master acts as a shipping commissioner, the same procedure applies.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 substituted "master or individual in charge" for "shipping commissioner".

§10307. Posting agreements

At the beginning of a voyage, the master shall have a legible copy of the agreement required by section 10302 of this title, omitting signatures, exhibited in a part of the vessel accessible to the crew.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 564; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §405, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10307 46:577

Section 10307 requires the master to post a copy of the shipping agreement in a part of the vessel accessible to the crew prior to the commencement of a voyage. The posting must be done in a manner that gives seamen adequate notice of the particulars of the pending voyage.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 struck out at end "A master violating this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $100."

§10308. Foreign engagements

When a seaman is engaged outside the United States, the agreement required by section 10302 of this title shall be signed in the presence of a consular officer. If a consular officer is not available at the port of engagement, the seaman may be engaged, and the agreement shall be signed in the next port at which a consular officer is available.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 564; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §406, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10308 46:570

Section 10308 requires that shipping agreements made in foreign ports be signed in the presence of a consular officer. The penalty for violation of this section is $100.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 struck out "(a)" before "When a seaman" and struck out subsec. (b) which read as follows: "A master engaging a seaman in violation of this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $100. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty."

§10309. Engaging seamen to replace those lost by desertion or casualty

(a) If a desertion or casualty results in the loss of at least one seaman, the master shall engage, if obtainable, a number equal to the number of seamen of whose services the master has been deprived. The new seaman must have at least the same grade or rating as the seaman whose place the new seaman fills. The master shall report the loss and replacement to a consular officer at the first port at which the master arrives.

(b) This section does not apply to a fishing or whaling vessel or a yacht.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 564; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §407, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10309 46:569

Section 10309 provides for the replacement of seamen lost by desertion or casualty. It does not apply to fishing vessels, whaling vessels, or yachts.

Amendments

1993—Subsecs. (b), (c). Pub. L. 103–206 redesignated subsec. (c) as (b) and struck out former subsec. (b) which read as follows: "The master is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $200 for each report not made. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty."

§10310. Discharge

A master shall deliver to a seaman a full and true account of the seaman's wages and all deductions at least 48 hours before paying off or discharging the seaman.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 564; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §408, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10310 46:641

46:642

Section 10310 requires the master of a vessel to give each seaman a full account of the seaman's wages 48 hours before discharge. The penalty for violation is $50.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 struck out "or a shipping commissioner" after "to a seaman" and struck out at end "A master failing to deliver the account is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $50."

§10311. Certificates of discharge

(a) On discharging a seaman and paying the seaman's wages, the master or individual in charge shall provide the seaman with a certificate of discharge. The form of the certificate shall be prescribed by regulation. It shall contain—

(1) the name of the seaman;

(2) the citizenship or nationality of the seaman;

(3) the number of the seaman's merchant mariner's document;

(4) the name and official number of the vessel;

(5) the nature of the voyage (foreign, intercoastal, or coastwise);

(6) the propulsion class of the vessel;

(7) the date and place of engagement;

(8) the date and place of discharge; and

(9) the seaman's capacity on the voyage.


(b) The certificate of discharge may not contain a reference about the character or ability of the seaman. The certificate shall be signed by the master and the seaman.

(c) A certificate of discharge may not be issued if the seaman holds a continuous discharge book. The entries shall be made in the discharge book in the same manner as the entries required by subsection (a) of this section.

(d)(1) A record of each discharge shall be maintained by the owner, charterer, managing operator, master, or individual in charge in the manner and location prescribed by regulation. The records may not be open for general or public use or inspection.

(2) A duplicate of a record of discharge shall be issued to a seaman at the request of the seaman.

(e) This section does not apply to a fishing or whaling vessel or a yacht.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 564; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §409, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2436.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10311 46:643

Section 10311 requires a shipping commissioner, when discharging a seaman, either to provide the seaman with a certificate of discharge or to make an entry in the seaman's continuous discharge book. It requires that certain facts be included in the certificate or in the entry, prohibits other information from being included, and requires the Secretary to keep records of all discharges, copies of which must be furnished to seamen at cost upon request. These discharges are used to substantiate the nature and duration of the seaman's employment on a particular vessel. This section does not apply to fishing vessels, whaling vessels, or yachts.

Amendments

1993—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 103–206, §409(1), substituted "master or individual in charge" for "shipping commissioner".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 103–206, §409(2), substituted "by the master and the seaman" for "by the master, the seaman, and the shipping commissioner as witness".

Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 103–206, §409(3), substituted "owner, charterer, managing operator, master, or individual in charge" for "Secretary".

Subsec. (d)(2). Pub. L. 103–206, §409(4), substituted "at the request of the seaman" for "at a cost prescribed by regulation".

§10312. Settlements on discharge

When discharge and settlement are completed, the master, individual in charge, or owner and each seaman shall sign the agreement required by section 10302 of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 565; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §410, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2437.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10312(a), (b), (d)–(f) 46:644
10312(c) 46:652

Section 10312 outlines the procedures for settlements upon discharge and for settling disputes over seamen's wages and discharges.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 amended heading and text of section generally, substituting text consisting of sentence relating to signing agreements on discharge and settlement for former subsecs. (a) to (f) relating to such agreements, proceedings before shipping commissioners to settle disputes, certified copies of agreements, evidence of release of claims, and statements of wages paid.

§10313. Wages

(a) A seaman's entitlement to wages and provisions begins when the seaman begins work or when specified in the agreement required by section 10302 of this title for the seaman to begin work or be present on board, whichever is earlier.

(b) Wages are not dependent on the earning of freight by the vessel. When the loss or wreck of the vessel ends the service of a seaman before the end of the period contemplated in the agreement, the seaman is entitled to wages for the period of time actually served. The seaman shall be deemed a destitute seaman under section 11104 of this title. This subsection applies to a fishing or whaling vessel but not a yacht.

(c) When a seaman who has signed an agreement is discharged improperly before the beginning of the voyage or before one month's wages are earned, without the seaman's consent and without the seaman's fault justifying discharge, the seaman is entitled to receive from the master or owner, in addition to wages earned, one month's wages as compensation.

(d) A seaman is not entitled to wages for a period during which the seaman—

(1) unlawfully failed to work when required, after the time fixed by the agreement for the seaman to begin work; or

(2) lawfully was imprisoned for an offense, unless a court hearing the case otherwise directs.


(e) After the beginning of the voyage, a seaman is entitled to receive from the master, on demand, one-half of the balance of wages earned and unpaid at each port at which the vessel loads or delivers cargo during the voyage. A demand may not be made before the expiration of 5 days from the beginning of the voyage, not more than once in 5 days, and not more than once in the same port on the same entry. If a master does not comply with this subsection, the seaman is released from the agreement and is entitled to payment of all wages earned. Notwithstanding a release signed by a seaman under section 10312 of this title, a court having jurisdiction may set aside, for good cause shown, the release and take action that justice requires. This subsection does not apply to a fishing or whaling vessel or a yacht.

(f) At the end of a voyage, the master shall pay each seaman the balance of wages due the seaman within 24 hours after the cargo has been discharged or within 4 days after the seaman is discharged, whichever is earlier. When a seaman is discharged and final payment of wages is delayed for the period permitted by this subsection, the seaman is entitled at the time of discharge to one-third of the wages due the seaman.

(g)(1) Subject to paragraph (2), when payment is not made as provided under subsection (f) of this section without sufficient cause, the master or owner shall pay to the seaman 2 days' wages for each day payment is delayed.

(2) The total amount required to be paid under paragraph (1) with respect to all claims in a class action suit by seamen on a passenger vessel capable of carrying more than 500 passengers for wages under this section against a vessel master, owner, or operator or the employer of the seamen shall not exceed ten times the unpaid wages that are the subject of the claims.

(3) A class action suit for wages under this subsection must be commenced within three years after the later of—

(A) the date of the end of the last voyage for which the wages are claimed; or

(B) the receipt, by a seaman who is a claimant in the suit, of a payment of wages that are the subject of the suit that is made in the ordinary course of employment.


(h) Subsections (f) and (g) of this section do not apply to a fishing or whaling vessel or a yacht.

(i) This section applies to a seaman on a foreign vessel when in a harbor of the United States. The courts are available to the seaman for the enforcement of this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 566; Pub. L. 99–640, §10(b)(4), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3550; Pub. L. 111–281, title IX, §902(a)(1), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 3008.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10313(a) 46:591
10313(b) 46:592

46:593

10313(c) 46:594
10313(d) 46:595
10313(e)–(i) 46:596

46:597

46:598

Section 10313 provides that a seaman's entitlement to wages begins when the seaman begins work, or as specified in the shipping agreement. This section also qualifies a seaman's entitlement to wages if the vessel is lost or wrecked, if the seaman is discharged improperly, or if the seaman unlawfully failed to work or was imprisoned. It also establishes procedures for the payment of wages at each port the vessel loads or unloads cargo, and at the end of the voyage. This section applies to seamen on foreign vessels in United States harbors, but not to fishing vessels, whaling vessels or yachts.

Amendments

2010—Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 111–281 designated existing provisions as par. (1), substituted "(1) Subject to paragraph (2), when" for "When", and added pars. (2) and (3).

1986—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 99–640 struck out last sentence which read as follows: "However, this subsection applies to a vessel taking oysters."

Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 99–640 struck out last sentence which read as follows: "However, subsections (f) and (g) apply to a vessel taking oysters."

§10314. Advances

(a)(1) A person may not—

(A) pay a seaman wages in advance of the time when the seaman has earned the wages;

(B) pay advance wages of the seaman to another person; or

(C) make to another person an order, note, or other evidence of indebtedness of the wages, or pay another person, for the engagement of seamen when payment is deducted or to be deducted from the seaman's wage.


(2) A person violating this subsection is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $500. A payment made in violation of this subsection does not relieve the vessel or the master from the duty to pay all wages after they have been earned.

(b) A person demanding or receiving from a seaman or an individual seeking employment as a seaman, remuneration for providing the seaman or individual with employment, is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $500.

(c) This section applies to a foreign vessel when in waters of the United States. An owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, or master of a foreign vessel violating this section is liable to the Government for the same penalty as an owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, or master of a vessel of the United States for the same violation.

(d) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, or master of a vessel seeking clearance from a port of the United States shall present the agreement required by section 10302 of this title at the office of clearance. Clearance may be granted to a vessel only if this section has been complied with.

(e) This section does not apply to a fishing or whaling vessel or a yacht.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 567; Pub. L. 99–640, §10(b)(4), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3550.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10314 46:599

Section 10314 forbids advance payment of wages to seamen prior to the commencement of the seaman's employment. It provides a civil penalty of $500 for any person making such a payment, and for any person demanding or receiving remuneration for providing a seaman with employment. This means that the use of employment agencies for hiring seamen is prohibited. It also requires compliance with section 10302 regarding the signing of articles of agreement before a vessel can be cleared from a United States port. This section applies to foreign vessels in United States waters but not to fishing vessels, whaling vessels or yachts.

Amendments

1986—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 99–640 struck out last sentence which read as follows: "However, this section applies to a vessel taking oysters."

§10315. Allotments

(a) Under prescribed regulations, a seaman may stipulate as follows in the agreement required by section 10302 of this title for an allotment of any part of the wages the seaman may earn:

(1) to the seaman's grandparents, parents, spouse, sister, brother, or children;

(2) to an agency designated by the Secretary of the Treasury to handle applications for United States savings bonds, to purchase bonds for the seaman; and

(3) for deposits to be made in an account for savings or investment opened by the seaman and maintained in the seaman's name at a savings bank or a savings institution in which the accounts are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation.


(b) An allotment is valid only if made in writing and signed by and approved by a shipping commissioner. The shipping commissioner shall examine allotments and the parties to them to enforce compliance with the law. Stipulations for allotments made at the beginning of a voyage shall be included in the agreement and shall state the amounts and times of payment and the person to whom payments are to be made.

(c) Only an allotment complying with this section is lawful. A person falsely claiming qualification as an allottee under this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $500.

(d) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, or master of a vessel seeking clearance from a port of the United States shall present the agreement at the office of clearance. Clearance may be granted to a vessel only if this section has been complied with.

(e) This section applies to a foreign vessel when in waters of the United States. An owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, or master of a foreign vessel violating this section is liable to the Government for the same penalty as an owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, or master of a vessel of the United States for the same violation.

(f) Deposits in Seaman Account.—By written request signed by the seaman, a seaman employed on a passenger vessel capable of carrying more than 500 passengers may authorize the master, owner, or operator of the vessel, or the employer of the seaman, to make deposits of wages of the seaman into a checking, savings, investment, or retirement account, or other account to secure a payroll or debit card for the seaman if—

(1) the wages designated by the seaman for such deposit are deposited in a United States or international financial institution designated by the seaman;

(2) such deposits in the financial institution are fully guaranteed under commonly accepted international standards by the government of the country in which the financial institution is licensed;

(3) a written wage statement or pay stub, including an accounting of any direct deposit, is delivered to the seaman no less often than monthly; and

(4) while on board the vessel on which the seaman is employed, the seaman is able to arrange for withdrawal of all funds on deposit in the account in which the wages are deposited.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 567; Pub. L. 111–281, title IX, §902(a)(2), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 3009.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10315 46:599

Section 10315 lists the persons to whom a seaman may allot wages, specifies the conditions which make an allotment valid, and provides a civil penalty of $500 for falsely claiming qualification as an allottee. It also requires that this section be complied with before a vessel can be cleared from a United States port. This section applies to foreign vessels.

Amendments

2010—Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 111–281 added subsec. (f).

Transfer of Functions

Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation abolished and functions transferred, see sections 401 to 406 of Pub. L. 101–73, set out as a note under section 1437 of Title 12, Banks and Banking.

§10316. Trusts

Sections 10314 and 10315 of this title do not prevent an employer from making deductions from the wages of a seaman, with the written consent of the seaman, if—

(1) the deductions are paid into a trust fund established only for the benefit of seamen employed by that employer, and the families and dependents of those seamen (or of those seamen, families, and dependents jointly with other seamen employed by other employers, and the families and dependents of the other seamen); and

(2) the payments are held in trust to provide, from principal or interest, or both, any of the following benefits for those seamen and their families and dependents:

(A) medical or hospital care, or both.

(B) pensions on retirement or death of the seaman.

(C) life insurance.

(D) unemployment benefits.

(E) compensation for illness or injuries resulting from occupational activity.

(F) sickness, accident, and disability compensation.

(G) purchasing insurance to provide any of the benefits specified in this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 568.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10316 46:599(g)

Section 10316 qualifies the two previous sections by allowing an employer to make deductions from seamen's wages for the purpose of placing the wages into a trust fund or holding them in trust to provide for the seamen's benefit.

§10317. Loss of lien and right to wages

A master or seaman by any agreement other than one provided for in this chapter may not forfeit the master's or seaman's lien on the vessel or be deprived of a remedy to which the master or seaman otherwise would be entitled for the recovery of wages. A stipulation in an agreement inconsistent with this chapter, or a stipulation by which a seaman consents to abandon a right to wages if the vessel is lost, or to abandon a right the seaman may have or obtain in the nature of salvage, is void.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 568.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10317 46:600

Section 10317 prohibits a master or seaman from entering into an agreement which forfeits his or her lien on the vessel or other remedy for recovery of wages, and renders such agreements void.

§10318. Wages on discharge in foreign ports

(a) When a master or seaman applies to a consular officer for the discharge of the seaman, the consular officer shall require the master to pay the seaman's wages if it appears that the seaman has carried out the agreement required by section 10302 of this title or otherwise is entitled to be discharged. Then the consular officer shall discharge the seaman. A consular officer shall require the payment of extra wages only as provided in this section or in chapter 109 of this title.

(b) When discharging a seaman, a consular officer who fails to require the payment of the wages due a seaman at the time, and of the extra wages due under subsection (a) of this section, is accountable to the United States Government for the total amount.

(c) A seaman discharged under this section with the consent of the seaman is entitled to wages up to the time of discharge, but not for any additional period.

(d) If the seaman is discharged involuntarily, and it appears that the discharge was not because of neglect of duty, incompetency, or injury incurred on the vessel, the master shall provide the seaman with employment on a vessel agreed to by the seaman or shall provide the seaman with one month's extra wages.

(e) Expenses for the maintenance and return of an ill or injured seaman to the United States shall be paid by the Secretary of State. If a seaman is incapacitated by illness or injury and prompt discharge is necessary, but a personal appearance of the master before a consular officer is impracticable, the master may provide transportation to the seaman to the nearest consular officer for discharge.

(f) A deduction from wages of the seaman is permitted only if the deduction appears in the account of the seaman required to be delivered under section 10310 of this title, except for matters arising after delivery of the account, in which case a supplementary account is required. During a voyage, the master shall record in the official logbook the matters about which deductions are to be made with the amounts of the deductions. The entries shall be made as the matters occur. The master shall produce the official logbook at the time of payment of wages, and also before a competent authority on the hearing of any complaint or question about the payment of wages.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 568.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10318 46:682

46:683

Section 10318 establishes consular officers' responsibilities in discharging seamen and the seamen's right to wages when discharged and when incapacitated by illness or injury. It also requires a master to record in the official logbook all matters for which deductions are to be made from seamen's wages.

§10319. Costs of a criminal conviction

In a proceeding about a seaman's wages, if it is shown that the seaman was convicted during the voyage of an offense by a competent tribunal and sentenced by the tribunal, the court hearing the case may direct that a part of the wages due the seaman, but not more than $15, be applied to reimburse the master for costs properly incurred in procuring the conviction and sentence.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 569.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10319 46:707

Section 10319 provides that if a seaman was convicted during a voyage by a tribunal, that the court may direct that up to $15 of the seaman's wages be used to reimburse the master for the costs incurred.

§10320. Records of seamen

The Secretary shall prescribe regulations requiring vessel owners to maintain records of seamen on matters of engagement, discharge, and service. A vessel owner shall make these records available to the seaman and the Coast Guard on request.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 569; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §411, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2437.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10320 ..............................................

Section 10320 authorizes the Secretary to provide for the maintenance of records of the engagement, discharge, or service of seamen.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 amended heading and text of section generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: "The Secretary may prescribe regulations for reporting by a master of matters about the engagement, discharge, or service of seamen that may be needed in keeping central records of seamen."

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§10321. General penalty

(a) A person violating any provision of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000.

(b) The vessel is liable in rem for any penalty assessed under this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 569; Pub. L. 103–206, title IV, §412, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2437.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
10321 46:567

46:568

46:571

46:661

46:665

Section 10321 makes a vessel on which a seaman is carried to sea in violation of this chapter or regulation prescribed under this chapter liable in rem to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $200 for each seaman carried in violation.

Amendments

1993Pub. L. 103–206 amended heading and text of section generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: "The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, or master of a vessel on which a seaman is carried in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $200 for each seaman carried in violation. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty."