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Old 15-10-2009, 21:50   #1
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Crew Agreement Example

Here is an example of a crew agreement you might use if you are taking on crew who you do not know much about. If you are intending to use friends as crew you might review this example to get "talking points" to discuss with your friend so you are both "on the same page" about the expectations and requirements of being a crew member.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
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File Type: pdf CrewAgreement.pdf (39.6 KB, 1596 views)
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Old 15-10-2009, 21:55   #2
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Where do I sign? Let's go
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Old 15-10-2009, 22:26   #3
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Have to be quite careful the skipper doesn't sound like Attila the Hun.

I know the USA is a tad more litigious than the rest of the world, but is a contract that looks like the poor old crewman is going to end up in court the best way to go?

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Old 16-10-2009, 09:02   #4
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Legally, absolutely, in the USA bad/idiotic people have gotten substantial court awards for such issues as injuring a thief who was robbing you, not preventing a deliberate suicide attempt from succeeding; causing injury to a mugger; or using deadly force to prevent someone from raping you.
- - For the rest of the world, I put the sentence about using it merely as a guide for a conversation/discussion between the parties so that each has an understanding of what is expected and the risks involved. That's assuming that both parties are people of honor and common sense.
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Old 16-10-2009, 18:54   #5
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No way as crew I's sign anything like that
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Old 16-10-2009, 19:54   #6
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Good luck finding a crew with that

You hire me on, you pay. Including Plane Ticket Home

Paying for costs....PFFFFFFFTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
Here is an example of a crew agreement you might use if you are taking on crew who you do not know much about. If you are intending to use friends as crew you might review this example to get "talking points" to discuss with your friend so you are both "on the same page" about the expectations and requirements of being a crew member.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Paid Crew Members are covered under the Jones Act
http://www.maritimelawcenter.com/htm...jones_act.html
about mid way through the reading.
Any monies contributed by the crew make it a for hire vessel
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Old 16-10-2009, 20:23   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
Here is an example of a crew agreement you might use if you are taking on crew who you do not know much about. If you are intending to use friends as crew you might review this example to get "talking points" to discuss with your friend so you are both "on the same page" about the expectations and requirements of being a crew member.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
That's it? Do you mean Coast Guard (or other Powers) Safety Certified?

There are so many holes in it, it would sink in most US courts. How about if a crew has illegal drugs? The Captain would most likely get arrested.
How about an unauthorized weapon, criminal record, personal documents, hygiene and so on?

Personally, I think it would be better for all hands to sit into several meetings and document agreements and disagreements then vote, if more then three, on the document. And then all hands sign and publish.

I'd suggest a list of subjects to discuss would be a better option!
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Old 16-10-2009, 20:47   #8
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Upon further rview....this would not hold up in an Admiralty Court.

The line that sez, "I am the Captain and you must obey all lawful orders"

hibbidy-jibbidy.......I wonder how long it would take the Captain/owner to get the contract removed from their anal-orifice once somebody read that?

"and then there were the strawberries" Captain Queeg
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Old 16-10-2009, 21:17   #9
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Chief Engineer - This example is NOT for paid crew - It is for volunteer UNPAID crew. As you rightly said paid crew are covered under the Jones Act and normally have an additional much different legal contract they have to sign.
- - The original version is currently in use for the Mexico Ba Ha Ha. I removed the information about that and brought it into conformance with USCG rules and official interpretations on what constitutes Commercial versus Private operation.
- - Delmarrey - there is a whole section on illegal drugs and weapons including the consent for the Captain to search for them if he feels it's necessary. That also includes disclosure of any former criminal activities. That is pretty as ironclad as possible except that in USA courts it is usually always a matter of who has the better lawyer as to whether it holds up or not.
- - If anybody has specific additional wording or suggestions on how to make it better within the context of providing protection for both owner and volunteer crew - please post them. Things can always be improved.
- - And for the third time, I said, It can be used, at the boat owner's discretion, merely as the checklist of talking points for discussion with potential volunteer "crew friends." There is "no voting" in maritime matters - The Captain/owner is as mentioned ultimately responsible and faces the possible confiscation of his vessel and a vacation in a Federal prison if caught with illegal materials on board his vessel. Therefore the Captain/owner must be confident that no illegal items are on board before departure.
- - The part that is most open to revision/negotiation is the repatriation paragraph. As a volunteer crew member I would prefer to have something about a free ticket home if the Captain/owner turns into a Captain Bligh character. Which just happened to a very good friend of mine who had to "jump ship" at the second port on a trans-Pacific journey. It was a hardship to have to buy a "walk up full fare" ticket back home.
- - It is critical to get to know something about the personality and habits of any potential volunteer crew before shoving off. This and other forums are full of horror stories on that subject, especially in the experiences of volunteer female crew members.
- - But as was said, a lot is negotiable but some things like drugs/weapons are bottom line positions. One newbie poster on this forum asked if recreational drugs were allowable . . . Anybody who has been boarded by the USCG in the Caribbean knows that is a non-starter.
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Old 16-10-2009, 21:36   #10
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Upon further rview....this would not hold up in an Admiralty Court.
The line that sez, "I am the Captain and you must obey all lawful orders"
hibbidy-jibbidy.......I wonder how long it would take the Captain/owner to get the contract removed from their anal-orifice once somebody read that?
"and then there were the strawberries" Captain Queeg
- - Chief Engineer - you have got to be kidding? . . . "Lawful Orders" is well understood in Naval and Maritime law going all the way back in history centuries. Mutiny on the Bounty is a much publicized example. Naval tradition and Admiralty Law uphold "Lawful Orders" in general and specifically. Unlawful orders can be ignored as by definition they are not germane to the safe operation of the vessel or put crew members at mortal risk without lawful justification. I would hope you would know the difference between the two. That is also a subject that should be discussed with potential volunteer crew - what is a lawful order and what is not a lawful order. Most "landlubbers" have no idea and that could be very dangerous to the health and safety of the crew and vessel.
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Old 16-10-2009, 21:54   #11
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"and then there were the strawberries" Captain Queeg
*Burp!* They were great thanks, Cap'n!

Well, we shouldn't slag osirissail's idea!

It is a good idea to have some sort of mutual understanding and the points put down in writing as an aide memoire.

Perhaps if we discuss it, there is a good way to go it where everyone is happy and not confronted by it


Mark

PS Its should include the measurements of "The Plank"!
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Old 16-10-2009, 22:11   #12
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Am I glad I have my own boat. I would never get to sail
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Old 17-10-2009, 06:42   #13
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Badsanta, Having your own boat is both a joy and a curse. It puts you in the Captain/owner position. When or if you ever go cruising as a couple and its happens that half your crew needs to fly home for medical or family emergency you will have the problem of how to get your boat back home by yourself quickly and safely. That means getting somebody to assist you - volunteer crew. Or you can hire a delivery Captain and take your chances with that route.
- - There are many, many posts on the dozens of cruising/sailing forums listing people needing volunteer crew or offering to be volunteer crew. Since you own your boat - how would you determine whether a potential volunteer crew is both capable, willing and able to safely assist you?
- - Would you say, "Hello, glad to meet you, let's go" or want some references, and gain some knowledge of the background of the potential volunteer crew person? You are taking someone on board your boat who may be of great assistance or may end up costing you your boat and your freedom - possibly your life.
- - Weeding out the "smart asses" and "know-it-alls" from serious worthwhile candidates who can really assist you in your time of need is not very easy. It is certainly more difficult than recognizing and separating out the "trolls" from any serious discussions on forums such as this. They are normally recognized by their non-germane one-liners containing vulgar references. Constructive contributions result in better understanding of the issue at hand and how a boat owner can protect himself and his boat when a situation of need develops.
- - Having some knowledge of what problems can arise and ideas on how to mitigate or eliminate them is very valuable, especially to a boatowner - out there - all by himself.
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Old 17-10-2009, 07:27   #14
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Any sailor worth his salt KNOWS the Captain is in charge.....he/she doesn't need to sign any stinking piece of paper to realize that.
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Old 17-10-2009, 09:35   #15
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Orisail…I commend you for trying to document a volunteer crew agreement.

Chiefy is over-reacting (probably because of some bad experiences working on boats) but it IS wise to lay out the ground rules very clearly before you leave, even for volunteer crew.

Previously when I was a well paid delivery skipper, I had many crew who would volunteer to come along for the experience and to hone their navigational skills (pre sat nav-loran days).

Sailing conditions was something I made very clear in writing, but more in point form, less wishy / washy about good intent etc etc… I simply identified the key elements to protect the Owner’s investment and list what I expected.

The reality is that the Owner/Captain makes the rules and the crew can either join them or not, but any Owner who does not prepare for delivery crew problems is a fool as is any Captain who becomes a Bligh

Repatriation costs are legally the boat owner’s responsibility once you arrive, so very simply how I handled that was: Prior to departure, every volunteer crew member paid me an amount equaling a one way fare back home from their farthest planned destination.

If they didn’t pay - they did not join, simple as that….!

Those that joined, I held on to the money, I held on to their passports.

Never had any issues and if a crew had to leave early for whatever reason, I bought them a ticket, accompanied them to the airport, saw them off and always returned any leftover funds.

For Crew who did an outstanding job on the delivery, I usually convinced the owner to spring for their ticket home and gave them a full refund and a great recommendation.

For professional crew, there are specific rules of conduct and definitions of misconduct.


My crew agreement in that application is very formal, reasonable and definitely not negotiable.
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