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Old 27-09-2017, 11:54   #1
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Jones act and six pack

Hello I'm thinking of buying a boat built in Taiwan and using it in the charter industry in the states. Does the Jones act apply to 6 pack charters?
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Old 27-09-2017, 12:04   #2
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Re: Jones act and six pack

I think the simple answer is yes...

Here is a link that might be helpful.
Will a MARAD Waiver Allow Charters on a Foreign-Built Boat? - Boating World

Best of luck to you...What kind of boat are you looking at?

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Old 27-09-2017, 14:18   #3
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Re: Jones act and six pack

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Originally Posted by D Rock View Post
I think the simple answer is yes...

Here is a link that might be helpful.
Will a MARAD Waiver Allow Charters on a Foreign-Built Boat? - Boating World

Best of luck to you...What kind of boat are you looking at?

D
Thanks. This is a great read and very informative. Sounds like I would just need to get a Marad waiver.
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Old 28-09-2017, 04:55   #4
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Re: Jones act and six pack

I don't think the linked article answered the original question, which specifically referenced 6-pack charters. I'm assuming this is a "normal" charter fishing or sightseeing boat. You do need a licensed captain for this, btw. I assume we're not talking about a bareboat charter, which the linked article explained in some detail.

My understanding is you do NOT need to conform to the Jones Act for a 6-pack charter.

If I'm wrong (and it wouldn't be the first time) I'd love to see the statute.
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Old 28-09-2017, 05:38   #5
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Re: Jones act and six pack

First, I'm not a lawyer; but based on my understanding the Jones Act does apply to boats used for 6-pack charter. However, there is a Small Vessel Waiver Program which allows exemptions:

https://www.marad.dot.gov/ships-and-...aiver-program/
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Old 28-09-2017, 06:19   #6
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Re: Jones act and six pack

not an expert on this . . . .but I believe the actual directly relevant act is the The Passenger Vessel Services Act (the Jones act really focuses on cargo, and the PVSA is sort of its mirror with respect to passenger carriage).

In any case, with either act, they both do definitely apply to 6 pacs. There is no size minimum. There are various tricks to avoid them, like 'voyages to nowhere', and getting the exemption mentioned above, but they are subtle and easy to get into trouble with. Larry Ellison got a specific personal act of congress passed to exempt his america cup support boats from both these acts, probably easy to do if you have a couple $m for campaign contributions

The USCG does provide a 72 hour turn around on questions of interpretation related to these acts. So, it is pretty easy to get an official position from them on whether your specific plan is covered or exempt.
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Old 28-09-2017, 06:21   #7
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Re: Jones act and six pack

Call or write the Coast Guard to confirm what is required.
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Old 28-09-2017, 09:30   #8
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Smile Re: Jones act and six pack

Irrespective of where the boat is built - will you have hired crew to operate the boat? If you will be operating the boat with a paid crew it would be in your best interests to purchase a Protection and Indemnity policy for the vessel and crew liabilities. Talk to your local insurance agent or find one who is versed in Marine Insurance.

Good luck and fair seas!
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Old 28-09-2017, 09:51   #9
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Re: Jones act and six pack

Kona is a big sport fishing location with many 6 pack charter boats. Know of several foreign built boats, primarily from Costa Rica that are being used so there is an exemption.

Interestingly, had a US built boat that was bought by a Japanese national banned from chartering even after it was resold and bought by a US citizen. Don't know how that one worked out.
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Old 28-09-2017, 10:19   #10
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Re: Jones act and six pack

Have been involved in getting MRAD waivers for several boats, mine included. Not hard to do, but as officials explained to me, some venues are almost always contested. So I would discuss your intended venue and nature of charter with officials first before making a comitment and it not working out.
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Old 28-09-2017, 11:22   #11
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Re: Jones act and six pack

This was a hot topic when I was in the bareboat biz ten years ago. My understanding is that the Jones Act applied but it was not enforced. We had many foreign hulls in our fleet. Also heard that's one of the reasons The Moorings started having their Beneteaus manufactured in the states. We did have a French made Beneteau in our fleet. Seemed an area where nobody really knew what was happening. Did a lot of research then but forgot it all.
Government agencies seemed unclear on many aspects regarding legality in the charter industry. This was in Washington State.
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Old 28-09-2017, 11:55   #12
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Re: Jones act and six pack

^^ a true bareboat charter is one exception to these acts - because then the charterers are not considered 'passengers'. But the subtle point is if it is a 'bareboat' with a captain provided or even just recommended by the charter company then it does not fit the exception.
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Old 28-09-2017, 11:56   #13
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Re: Jones act and six pack

Things have changed, used to be that with UPVs nation of build didn't matter regardless of technical/precise legal requirements. Now the USCG is much more stringent. Might find this document helpful:

Requirements For Uninspected Passenger Vessels

Quote:
UPVs whose route is from point "A" in the U.S. to point "B" in the U.S., or returning to point "A" without leaving U.S. territorial waters must be U.S. built and hold a COD with an operational endorsement for coastwise trade. If the vessel is of foreign or unknown build, it must receive a waiver from MARAD through the Small Vessel Waiver Program.

46 USC 12106(b), 46 CFR 67.19(a), 19 CFR 4.80.
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Old 28-09-2017, 12:01   #14
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Re: Jones act and six pack

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^^ a true bareboat charter is one exception to these acts - because then the charterers are not considered 'passengers'. But the subtle point is if it is a 'bareboat' with a captain provided or even just recommended by the charter company then it does not fit the exception.
We would also use captains. Probably illegal but nobody seemed to care. Even had boats inspected every year. Wasn't my call. Always made me nervous.
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Old 28-09-2017, 12:35   #15
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Re: Jones act and six pack

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Originally Posted by estarzinger View Post
^^ a true bareboat charter is one exception to these acts - because then the charterers are not considered 'passengers'. But the subtle point is if it is a 'bareboat' with a captain provided or even just recommended by the charter company then it does not fit the exception.
Yes, its not that it was not enforced, its that it does not apply to "bareboat"...since its not "coastwise trade" transporting goods or passengers.

Ive also seen charter companies dance around this by chartering out the boat sans crew, but requiring chartereer to hire competent captain/crew. The interpretation was that as long as the charter company did not provide captain or crew then they were clear of Jones Act violations. I was always a bit skeptical of that, but it was a common practice.
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