Working on a yacht carries certain risks. Owners might not be willing to pay what they need to pay to keep their vessels in proper working order, potentially creating safety risks for crew and staff. How the ship is run and operated could also result in injuries and dangers, potentially even leading to the yacht sinking. Severe accidents could even put crew and passengers’ lives at risk.
If you or a loved one was injured while working on a yacht in Florida, call Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind, P.A. Our Florida attorney for injured yacht crewmembers are dedicated to helping injured yacht crew and their families get compensation for injuries and holding their staffing agencies, employees, and ship owners responsible for their damages. For a free case consultation, call our lawyers today at (866) 386-1762.
Types of Accidents and Injuries for Yacht Workers in Florida
Yacht workers can be injured in many different ways at work. Yachts, like any ship or vehicle, could be involved in accidents that could potentially put the crew’s lives and safety at risk. Yacht crew could also be injured in many accidents on board the vessel, and they could face other risks from assault and injury by others aboard the ship.
Yacht accidents could injure crewmembers during the shock of a crash. Passengers and crew could be thrown to the deck or into bulkheads, potentially suffering head and back injuries and broken bones. Yacht accidents could also cause a vessel to sink, potentially leaving crew to the risks of being out on a life raft or falling into the water.
Fires aboard a yacht could cause serious burns and other injuries to crewmembers. Fires could break out on board a yacht from mistakes in the kitchen, engine malfunctions, and even a simple risk like the owner or another crewmember improperly disposing of cigarettes. Suing the owner or operators of the ship for injuries from a fire is possible in many cases.
Dangerous Shipboard Conditions
If you slip and fall on deck or suffer from electrocution injuries, burns, or other injuries from unsafe conditions on the ship, you might be able to sue the ship owner. Injuries from these kinds of conditions are often preventable through proper maintenance, upkeep, and cleaning. If the owner or operator of the yacht fails to take the proper steps to keep the yacht safe or warn crew about dangers, they could be responsible for these types of injuries.
Assault and Sexual Assault
Many passengers and owners of yachts are accused of being rough or abusive to staff. If your employer puts their hands on you to cause you intentional harm or if they sexually assault you, you could be entitled to sue them for the encounter. Even in cases where there are few physical injuries, the act of assault or sexual assault could entitle you to compensation.
How Do You File a Lawsuit for Injuries as a Yacht Crewmember in Florida?
Many injured workers in Florida must use workers compensation to hold their employers accountable for injuries at work. Workers on yachts and other ships are usually excluded from these rules since these vessels fall under maritime jurisdiction instead of the typical rules for employees and workers in Florida. This means that, under the Jones Act and other federal laws, victims of serious injuries on yachts can often sue for injuries, even if they were working on the yacht at the time of the injury.
When you file an injury case for injuries while working on a yacht in Florida, the case is typically filed against whatever party is responsible for the accident or incident. If you are hired directly by the owner of the ship and they are legally your “boss,” then any injuries would likely be claimed against that one central person. However, some yacht workers work for staffing agencies or even catering companies rather than the owner of the yacht itself.
If the injuries were caused by unsafe conditions on the ship or maintenance issues with the vessel, then the owner of the yacht is likely responsible. If you were injured by mistakes in operation, then the individual or company in charge of operations aboard the ship – whether that be the owner, your employer, or another agency – is likely responsible. If you were assaulted, then that individual assailant is likely responsible, but you might be able to hold the owner or operator of the yacht responsible for their negligent security, negligent screening of employees, or other failures to handle past allegations if such issues led to the assault.
When you file a lawsuit against these parties, you will usually do so in state court in Florida. Although the case might be governed by maritime law, the case might still have to be filed in state court if the injuries occurred at port or in Florida waters. If the injury happened in waters in another state or far enough from the coast, you might have to file in federal court under maritime jurisdiction. In any case, an experienced Florida yacht crew injury lawyer can help you determine whom to sue, which court to file in, and how to maximize the damages you receive in your case.
Call Our Florida Attorney for Injured Yacht Staff and Crew for a Free Consultation
If you worked on a yacht as a captain, a crewmember, a custodian, a cook, or even a caterer, you could be entitled to sue your employer or the yacht owner for injuries sustained on board. Call Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind’s Florida attorneys for injured yacht crewmembers today for help with your case. Our attorneys offer free case consultations to help evaluate your case and advise you on how to proceed with your claim. For your free consultation, call us today at (866) 386-1762.