Crewmembers on a cruise ship are considered “special wards of the court” when operating on a vessel. This special denomination gives crewmembers rights above and beyond a normal person on a vessel. Sailors are usually unaware of their rights when working a vessel in the United States, but it is important to be fully informed of your rights as a crewmember of a cruise ship. The best way to understand your rights as a crewmember is to discuss them with an admiralty lawyer. Whether on a cruise ship, fishing vessel, or any other type of vessel, crewmembers are at constant risk of working under negligent, lazy ship owners. Know what rights you have to protect yourself against abuse at the hands of your ship owner.