U.S. Third Circuit - The FindLaw 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

Delaware River & Bay Auth. v. Kopacz, No. 08-4029

In an admiralty case involving shipowner's duty to pay maintenance to a seaman, district court's award of declaratory judgment in favor of the seaman-defendant is affirmed where: 1) commuter seamen enjoy the same right to maintenance as their deep water counterparts; 2) the long-term disability payments do not offset the amount of maintenance owed which is a duty that is independent of the shipowner's contractual obligations; 3) receipt of social security benefits did not relieve the shipowner of its maintenance obligation; 4) district court did not abuse its discretion in awarding prejudgment interest award to compensate defendant for losses stemming from plaintiff's tardy discharge of its duty; and 5) district court properly exercised its discretion in denying defendant's claim for consequential damages.     

Read Delaware River & Bay Auth. v. Kopacz, No. 08-4029

Appellate Information

On Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Delaware (D.C. Civil No. 07-Cv-00008)  

District Judge: Honorable Sue L. Robinson

Opinion Filed September 25, 2009


Before: Rendell, Alarcon, and Stapleton, Circuit Judges
Opinion by Rendell, Circuit Judge 


Counsel for Appellant:  Mary E. Reeves, Donna Adelsberger & Associates

Counsel for Appellee: E. Alfred Smith, E. Alfred Smith & Associates