MAINTENANCE AND CURE MAY BE PAYABLE FOR MASTURBATION HEADACHE

In one of the more unique questions posed by the experienced Jones Act attorney, Dennis M. O’Bryan around the country, in McKinney v American River Transp. Co., 2013 WL 3270955 (S.D. Ill.), District Judge Reagan ruled that a seaman who left the vessel because of masturbation-induced headaches may be eligible to recover maintenance and cure once he proves that the headaches were not a pre-existing condition. The Judge stated that he would not wade into that “sticky wicket” determination without a prior determination of causality.

The employer argued that the headaches were the result of misconduct comparable to bad acts resulting in alcoholism and venereal disease. Judge Reagan did not buy that and said “it seems a stretch to characterize [masturbation] as gross misconduct or willful misbehavior.”

So, the question remains essentially open. Whether Ricky Boxing, as the Navy terms masturbation, can give rise to an entitlement to maintenance and cure will continue to be a sticky question.

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