Meche v. Key Energy Servs., LLC, No. 14-30032 (5th Cir. 2015)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff, the captain of a crew boat, filed suit against his employer and his supervisor under the Jones Act, 46 U.S.C. 50101, and general maritime law, seeking maintenance and cure and damages. All parties cross-appealed the district court's judgment. The court concluded that the district court's finding that plaintiff merely strained his back while lifting a hatch cover is not clearly erroneous; the district court's findings regarding the weather and condition of the seas at the time and location of the incident are not clearly erroneous; the district court properly ruled against plaintiff on all of his unseaworthiness claims; the district court's finding that defendants were not negligent is fully supported by the record; the court vacated the maintenance and cure award against the supervisor where the maintenance and cure duty extends only to the seaman's employer; and the McCorpen v. Central Gulf Steamship Corp. rule precludes plaintiff from obtaining maintenance and cure from his employer in this case. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment to the extent the district court rejected plaintiff's Jones Act negligence and unseaworthiness claims; vacated the awards against the employer and supervisor in their entirety; and rendered judgment in favor of the employer and supervisor.