Sivut kuvina

197. When seamen are forwarded from one consulate to another, as provided for in paragraphs 239, 250-253, any balances of moneys which may be due them should be remitted (together with a statement of the amounts) by bank draft or some other safe method to the Consular Officer at the port of their destination, who will manage the funds according to the law and these regulations.

198. When a seaman comes upon a Consulate from another port, or by shipwreck, or in any manner otherwise than by discharge from a vessel at the port, the Consular Officer will at once notify the Fifth Auditor of the Treasury of the fact, giving the name of the seaman, the date of arrival, the name of the place whence he came, with the date and cause of his leaving such place, the name of the vessel by which he came, and of the American vessel on which he was last engaged. If he has been sent from another consulate, the amount of his wages received as per preceding paragraph should also be reported. This information should be communicated immediately and without waiting until the end of the quarter. The form for the return in such cases is given in Form No. 126.

199. No payment of extra wages shall be required by any Consular Officer, upon the discharge of any seamen, except in the cases mentioned in the statute.-Act June 26, 1884 (paragraph 188).

200. It is held that when a seaman, being a foreigner, who has not declared his intention of becoming a citizen, and served three years on a merchant vessel, agreeably to section 2174 of the Revised Statutes (paragraph 170, No. 2), is shipped in a foreign port and is discharged in a foreign port, no extra wages are to be collected.

Seamen to be reported, when.

No extra wages except by statute.

Foreign seamen

Enforced and technical dis

201. When a scaman is discharged in a foreign port in consequence of his imprisonment by the authorities for an charge offense against the local laws, or is detained as a witness in such an offense, or where the seaman is taken from a vessel to be sent as a prisoner or a witness to the United States, no extra wages are to be collected. It is also held that no extra wages are collectible in the case of a technical discharge, not involving separation from the vessel, as when a seaman is promoted to be an officer, or an officer to be 765 CR-5

Quality of Amnerican seainen, how

master, or when an officer is disrated to the grade of seaman. The taking of a seaman from a vessel by the process of a foreign court, in the absence of fraud on the part of the master, would no doubt exonerate the latter from the obligation of the bond to return him to the United States. An unprincipled master, however, may be tempted to procure the arrest of a seaman for some trifling offense-as an assault and battery-committed on shore, for the sole purpose of evading the payment of extra wages. The Consular Officer should be well satisfied that this is not the case before he grants the discharge.

202. A foreign seaman, having shipped on an American retained and lost. vessel at a port of the United States, is entitled to extra wages on his discharge at a foreign port, in all cases where a seaman who is a citizen would be so entitled, and on such a discharge he may be relieved and returned to the United States. And the quality of an American seaman is retained by him on his shipment at such port of discharge on au American vessel; and he may continue to retain that quality by successive reshipments on American vessels abroad. It is held, however, that if he engages on board a foreign vessel at the port of discharge in a foreign country, he divests himself of the character of an American seaman and does not regain it until he again reships on an American vessel in a port of the United States. The rule is, that a foreigner discharged from an American vessel in a foreign port, and subsequently shipping on a foreign vessel, cannot thereafter be deemed an American seaman for the purposes of extra wages and relief until he returns to the United States and again ships on an American vessel. It is not material in such cases how many engagements he may serve on American vessels before his return to the United States. On the other hand, when an American seaman, who is also a citizen of the United States, is shipped and discharged under such circumstances, the case is within the statute and regulations relating to extra wages and relief.

Deserters, how regarded.

203. The foregoing case applies to seamen who are regularly discharged from American vessels in foreign ports, and not to deserters, unless the desertion was caused by cruel or unusual treatment. A foreigner deserting from an Amer

ican vessel abroad, although subsequently reshipping on an American vessel at the port of desertion, is deemed by the act of desertion to have lost the character of an American seaman, and he will not be entitled to extra wages or relief if afterwards discharged in another foreign port. In discharging foreigners who claim to have served continuously in American vessels, Consular Officers, therefore, will be careful to satisfy themselves, wherever it is practicable, that the seaman was regularly discharged at the port of shipment, and was not a deserter.

204. A minor who conceals himself on board a vessel, Minor stowaways. and is discovered when the vessel is at sea, although he has been put on duty as a seaman, can be put on shore and delivered to a Consular Officer without the payment of extra wages. The decision that it is the duty of the Consular Officer in such a case to afford relief to him as a destitute seaman is not in accordance with the rules governing the adjustment of the accounts for the relief of seamen at the Treasury Department, and the expenses of relief under such circumstances are not allowed.

When vessel is sold in the United

ered abroad.

205. Instances have occurred in which a vessel has been sold in the United States to be delivered at a foreign port, States to be deliv and the shipping articles provided for the return of the seamen to the United States by the same vessel under a different owner. If such agreement is not complied with the Consular Officer at the port where the vessel is delivered to the new owner should formally discharge the seamen and collect the extra wages, unless the master shall, with the assent of the seaman, provide him with adequate employment on board some other vessel bound to the port at which he was originally shipped or to such other port as may be agreed upon by him.

206. Where a vessel is sold in a foreign country, and her company discharged (as provided in paragraph 188, No. 2), it is necessary to observe that it was not the intention of the act to comprehend cases of a forced and compulsory dissolution of the contract, as by shipwreck, capture, seizure, and forfeiture of the vessel withont the fault of the master or owners, or by any fortuitous occurrence against which human foresight and power could not provide. A discharge

Vessel must be sold voluntarily.

Extra wages where sale is vol untary.

But not in case of casualty.

Inspection for unseaworthiness.

Where no inspection is applied for.

of the mariner, to come within the meaning of the law, must be a discharge by a voluntary act of the master, and not a mere separation from the vessel by the unavoidable breaking up of the voyage by misfortune. The owners, however, will not be exempted from the payment of the extra wages, if the vessel can be repaired at a reasonable expense and in a reasonable time.

207. Therefore where a vessel is voluntarily or unnecessarily sold in a foreign port, and her company discharged, before the completion of the voyage or termination of the period for which they had shipped, it is the duty of the Consul to collect of the master one month's wages in addition to the arrears of wages due said seaman, unless, as we have already seen, the master, with the seaman's consent, shall procure him adequate employment on board another vessel.

208. Where the vessel, without default of the owners or master (that is, in case of casualty or accident of major force), is sold in a foreign port, and her company discharged, before the completion of the voyage or termination of the period for which they had shipped, no extra wages are to be collected.

209. Where upon a complaint, in writing, under sections 4559-4561 Revised Statutes, and section 4, act June 26, 1884, that the vessel is in an unsuitable condition to go to sea, an inspection is called by the Consul, and such inspection discloses that the vessel was sent to sea unsuitably provided in any essential particular by the neglect or design of the owners, or of their agent, and, in addition, the inspectors report that the vessel is so badly damaged or so unseaworthy as to be not worth repairing, the Consul, upon this report, shall collect one month's extra wages for every seaman discharged, although the vessel is sold in pursuance of the recommendation of the inspectors. (See paragraph 188, No. 1 and No. 2.)

210. But it is conceived that where there is no application to the Consul or Commercial Agent, as provided in section 4550 Revised Statutes, and the vessel is condemned and sold, after a survey duly held, at the instance of the master, in accordance with the general maritime law, and such survey discloses

the fact that she was sent to sea in an unfit condition, in such a case the month's wages are not to be paid. The remedy of the seaman is a libel in the proper admiralty court for damages. It is only when the statutory remedy is invoked that the extra wages are to be paid.

211. In cases of doubt, in which from any cause the Consular Officer is unable to decide to his satisfaction whether the extra wages should be collected or not, it will be the preferable and safer course for him to require their payment. The master or agent of the vessel should be permitted to make the payment under protest, if he shall see fit. A full statement of the facts should be promptly communicated to the Department of State, when the case will be examined, and restitution will be made if the circumstances are deemed to warrant it. A like report should also be made to the Fifth Auditor of the Treasury, to accompany the quarterly relief return to that officer.

Consul's proceed.

ings in doubtful cases.

Contract for discharge at a for

212. When an American seaman ships in a port of the United States or in a foreign port under a contract to be eign port. discharged at a foreign port, the case is not within the statutes respecting the payment of extra wages; but is within the intent of the statutes as to relief and passage to a port of the United States.

Arrears of wagse

to be collected and.

213. It is the duty of the Consular Officer to collect all arrears of wages that are due to a seaman up to the date of reported. his discharge, and to report the same quarterly, together with the extra wages collected, to the Fifth Auditor of the Treasury (Form 124). The arrears of wages and extra wages are first to be applied to the expenses of the seaman, and vouchers for wages paid to a seaman, as prescribed in Form No. 164, must accompany the relief accounts. A seaman who has wages in the hands of the Consular Officer cannot be regarded as destitute until they have been exhausted in defraying his expenses. (See paragraphs 189 and 190.)

214. It has been held that a Consular Officer has no authority to demand and receive from the master of a vessel the money and effects belonging to a deserter from the vessel. It is believed, however, that this decision may not be applicable where the vessel is sold in a foreign port to citizens or subjects of a foreign state. For instructions in such a case

Moneys and ef fects of deserters, 14 Op. Atty Gen., 520.

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