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Legal Blog

Who Enforces International Maritime Law?

When it comes to maritime law and policy, there can be some confusion on who enforces the rules and regulations regarding international maritime law. In United States waters, the U.S. Coastal Guard monitors all maritime issues. However, when it comes to international waters, who enforces maritime law can be tricky and sometimes complicated.

If you or someone you know has experienced an injury or accident on international water due to someone else’s fault, you may be eligible to recover damages. The Houston maritime injury lawyers at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. know how to deal with international maritime law cases and can evaluate your situation to help you.

Call today at 281-283-8500
to schedule a free consultation or complete our online form.

What is International Water?

International water is defined as any body of water outside of the United States’ boundaries.

While sailing in international waters, the ship falls under the jurisdiction of the country of the flag the ship is flying and the nearest coastal country. Typically, full jurisdiction will fall under your flag country, although sometimes it can fall under the coastal country. That means that if you are flying an American flag, you have the same maritime rights in international waters that you would in the United States. Thus, the U.S. Coastal Guard will have jurisdiction over your ship.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO)

The International Maritime Organization was created by the United Nations to establish the framework and regulations for safe and sustainable international traveling and shipping. The IMO is held responsible for the security of all international shipping.

The IMO also has the responsibility to enforce that ships follow the safety procedures set by the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS). SOLAS was set up after the sinking of the Titanic but was not officially enacted until 1974. It remains the most pertinent international treaty ensuring the security of merchant ships.

How Can a Lawyer Help?

When it comes to international maritime law, the laws and policies can be confusing without the proper knowledge and education on the subject. Our international maritime lawyers at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. know how to deal with these cases with care, precision, and resolve. Our lawyers can evaluate your case and help you work out the technicalities so you can receive justice.

Under the Jones Act, you may be eligible for compensation if you are a maritime worker and have sustained injuries on international waters. Call The Krist Law Firm, P.C. today to schedule a free consultation at (281) 283-8500 or fill out our online form.