Whether you’ve been hurt in a boat accident on your favorite lake, or you suffered an injury on a cruise ship, you know the accident wasn’t your fault. But the insurance company doesn’t see it that way, and you’re having a hard time obtaining the compensation you deserve. What can you do?
You can get in touch with a Keller, Melchiorre & Walsh Miami boating accident lawyer. We have a lot of experience in this area of the law, and we also have an extensive track record of helping our clients get every penny we have coming. We’ll work hard to do the same for you.
Causes of Boating Accidents in Miami
There are many potential causes of boating accidents, including:
- Operator error. Boating accidents often result from the operator of the vessel making mistakes or behaving negligently. For example, the operator might be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, might be speeding, or might be operating the boat in a reckless or careless manner.
- Mechanical failure. An accident can also be caused by mechanical failure of the vessel or its equipment. This might include engine failure, steering failure, or failure of other critical systems.
- Poor weather. Severe weather conditions can cause an accident as well, particularly if the operator of the vessel is unprepared or unable to handle the conditions.
- Navigation errors. Boating accidents can also be caused by navigation errors, such as running aground, colliding with other vessels, or the operator losing their bearings because they’re in unfamiliar waters.
- Lack of safety equipment. If a vessel is not equipped with the necessary safety equipment, such as life jackets or flares, the chances of an accident can increase significantly.
Common Injuries From a Miami Boating Accident
Boat accidents can lead to a lot of different kinds of severe injuries, including:
- Head injuries. Boats can be hit by other boats, collide with fixed objects, or capsize, resulting in head injuries that can include concussions, traumatic brain injuries and others.
- Spinal cord injuries. These are particularly injuries that can result from falls or collisions. They can be so bad that they cause paralysis or other serious disabilities.
- Broken bones. Falls or collisions can also result in broken bones, including fractures of the arms, legs, ribs, or pelvis.
Possible Liable Parties in a Miami Boating Accident
In a boat accident, there may be multiple parties who could be held liable for damages or injuries sustained. Some possible liable parties in a boat accident could include:
- The operator of the boat. If the operator of the boat was behaving negligently or recklessly, they may be held liable for the accident.
- Owner of the boat. The owner could have allowed someone to operate their vessel who was not competent or sober. They may be held liable for the accident as a result.
- The manufacturer of the boat or its components. If the boat or one of its components was defectively designed or manufactured, the manufacturer could be held liable for the accident.
- The person or entity responsible for maintaining the boat. If the boat was not properly maintained and this contributed to the accident, whoever was responsible could face liability.
- Other boats involved in the accident. If another boat was involved in the accident and its operator was behaving negligently or recklessly, they may be held liable for the accident.
Steps to Take After a Miami Boating Accident
If you are involved in a boating accident, you’ll need to take the following steps as soon as possible.
- Seek medical attention. If anyone has been injured in the accident, call 911 immediately. Even if no one appears to be seriously injured, it is important to seek medical attention as some injuries may not be immediately apparent.
- Gather information. This may include taking pictures of the scene, getting the names and contact information of any witnesses, and writing down any details about the accident that you can remember.
- Contact an attorney. If you believe that someone else was at fault, you may be entitled to compensation. A boat accident lawyer can help you understand your rights and options and advise you on the best course of action.
Damages You May be Able to Recover
If you‘ve been injured in a boat accident and believe that someone else was at fault, you may be entitled to recover damages. The types of damages that may be available to you will depend on the specific circumstances of your case, but some common types of damages that may be recoverable include:
- Medical expenses. These include whatever medical treatment you needed as a result of the accident.
- Lost wages. If you can’t work due to the accident, you may be able to obtain compensation for the wages you lost. If you can’t work for an extended period of time, you may also be able to obtain compensation for lost earning capacity.
- Pain and suffering. You’ve probably had to deal with an incredible amount of pain and suffering due to the injury. While this type of damages might not be easy to calculate, a skilled attorney will be able to do just that.
Reasons to Hire a Boating Accident Attorney
An experienced boat accident attorney can help you in a lot of ways. Here are just a few of the more important ones.
- Protecting your rights. An attorney can help you understand your rights and make sure that they are protected throughout the process.
- Negotiating with insurance companies. Insurance companies often try to minimize the amount they pay out after an accident. Your attorney can negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to help you get the compensation you deserve.
- Gathering and presenting evidence. Your lawyer will work to gather and present evidence to support your claim, including witness statements, accident reports, medical records and much more.
- Working to get the best possible settlement. An experienced attorney will know how to build a strong case and negotiate a settlement that covers all of your damages and losses. If we’re not successful in helping you obtain compensation, you won’t pay anything.