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“All Aboard!” An Overview of the Continuing Debate Regarding the Enforceability of Dispute Resolution Provisions of Filipino Seamen Employment Contracts

Authors
Publisher
bepress Legal Repository
Publication Date
Keywords
  • National Labor Relations Commission
  • Philippine Overseas Employment Administration
  • Arbitration
  • Jones Act
  • Convention On The Recognition And Enforcement Of Foreign Arbitral Awards
  • Saving To Suitors Clause
  • Federal Arbitration Act
  • Forum Non-Conveniens
  • Choice Of Laws
  • Enforcement
  • Contract Provisions
  • Comparative And Foreign Law
  • Conflict Of Laws
  • Contracts
  • Dispute Resolution
  • International Law
  • Conflicts Of Law
  • Dispute Resolution And Arbitration
Disciplines
  • Economics
  • Political Science

Abstract

â•œAll Aboard!â•š An Overview of the Continuing Debate Regarding the Enforceability of Dispute Resolution Provisions of Filipino Seamen Employment Contracts 1 I. Introduction A. Deployment and Protection of Overseas Filipino Seabased Workers Around the World Filipino seabased workers are deployed to countries throughout the world. In 1984, the total number of seafarers registered by the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (“POEA”) was 50,604.1 By 2002, the number reached 209,593.2 Though there has been a recent decrease in their deployment,3 one writer states that twenty percent of all seafarers4 onboard international ocean-going vessels today are Filipino.5 Accordingly, nearly all major maritime disasters will involve a Filipino seafarer.6 The incidences of litigation stemming from work related accidents have likely also increased.7 Foreseeing that employment conflicts would arise, the government of the Philippines put measures in place to protect its citizen seafarers who were deployed to countries all over the globe, including the United States.8 The two Filipino government agencies largely responsible for the regulation of the recruitment and employment of Filipino seafarers are the 1. Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, Deployment of Overseas Filipino Workers, 1984-2002, at http://www.poea.gov.ph/docs/Deployment%20Summary%20(LB_SB)%201984%202002.xls 2. Id. 3. Our Latest Report, Despite the Risks, Filipino Seafarers Toil in the World’s Oceans,(visited July 25, 2003) at http://www.pcij.org/stories/2003/seafarers.html 4. For the purposes of this document, “seafarer” refers to both male and female “seamen.” 5. Our Latest Report, Despite the Risks, at http://www.poea.gov.ph/docs/Deployment%20Summary%20(LB_SB)%201984%202002.xls 6. Id. 7. Cf. Susan A. Macmanus, The Impact of Litigation on Municipalities: Total Cost, Driving Factors, and Cost Containment Mechanisms, 44 Syracuse L. Rev. 833, 835 (1993) (discu

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