Maritime Labour Convention FAQ
One of the areas of MLC that you should be aware of, and that MHG is focused on, is the vessel owner's liability for accidents and sickness of the crew. Here are some common Questions and Answers specifically relating to Regulation 4.5, which is Social Security requirements for crew.
When does MLC come into force?
MLC 2006 went into effect August 20, 2013. There is no grace period beyond this date in order to be compliant.
Which countries have ratified MLC?
For a current list of countries, CLICK HERE
What if my flag state has not ratified MLC?If you are registered in a country that has not ratified MLC, this does not preclude you from being subject to inspection at arrival in a port state which has ratified MLC.
As a vessel owner, do I have to provide health care to my crew?
Yes, but only if your vessel is commercially operated and not strictly for pleasure. MLC does not apply to pleasure vessels.
How are the insurance obligations under MLC being met?
The vessel owner needs to assure proper coordination between the crew medical policy and the P&I insurance in place. This is especially important if the SEA addresses insurance being offered to the crew.
Does MLC specifically address the benefits required for crew?
The convention suggests 3 main branches of benefits to be provided in the early stages of implementation, but there are actually 9 branches prescribed.
The 3 generally accepted branches are medical care, sickness benefit and employment injury benefit.
How can I determine if the benefits I have are compliant with MLC?
Contact MHG to review your current plan. We can provide advice and information to help you determine whether your plan is in the spirit of MLC, and whether additional benefits may be needed. We can also review your plan for competitiveness in the marketplace as well as benchmark it with other crew group plans.
What nationalities are impacted by MLC?
All vessel owners who operate a commercial vessel are required to provide the 3 or more branches to all crewmembers, regardless of nationality.
Does MLC replace other regulations already in force?
No. MLC is considered the 4th pillar of International Maritime Law. It builds on prior legislation and addresses areas not previously discussed.
As an individual crewmember, do I need to do anything to comply with MLC?
No. This convention applies to vessel owners. It is their responsibility to provide you with the required benefits under MLC. However, if you currently do not have a Seafarers' Employment Agreement (SEA), you will be required to have one if you are working on a commercial vessel. The SEA will spell out the benefits that you will be provided with while employed.
How will MLC be enforced?
Upon arrival in a port state which has ratified MLC, your vessel may be subject to inspection for compliance. Keep in mind, this is even if your flag state has not ratified MLC. Possible outcomes include detention of the vessel