Drowning deaths are incredibly tragic. Many people die from accidental drowning after boat accidents or other accidents near the water, including scuba and snorkeling accidents, surfing accidents, jet ski accidents, and other accidents. If you lost a loved one to a drowning accident, the attorneys at Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind, P.A. might be able to help.
Our Florida Keys drowning death lawyers understand that it can be difficult to deal with the aftermath of a loved one’s death, and we work day in and day out with injury victims and the families of those killed in accidents. For help seeking compensation and justice for your loved one’s drowning death in the Florida Keys, contact our attorneys today at (866) 386-1762 to set up a free legal consultation.
How to File a Lawsuit for a Loved One’s Drowning Death in the Florida Keys
If you lost a loved one to a drowning accident in the Florida Keys, you might be entitled to file a lawsuit for their death. Both Florida law and U.S. maritime law allow victims of injuries and accidents to sue those responsible to seek financial compensation. In cases where a loved one dies, you usually have the right to file a lawsuit if you are their spouse, parent, or child.
The process of actually filing the lawsuit seems simple enough, but there are many legal principles at play, and it is always in your best interests to consult with a lawyer and have them prepare and file the proper paperwork.
To get a case started, your lawyer will file a “complaint” with the court that details who was responsible for the accident, when and where the accident took place, what happened, and how the at-fault party was responsible. It will also explain the damages you and your family are seeking for your loved one’s drowning death.
In many cases, determining which parties to sue and how much to claim in damages is something that you will need a lawyer’s help with.
Who is Responsible for Drowning Deaths and Accidents in the Florida Keys?
The question of who is responsible for an accident is closely tied to the facts of the case, who was involved, and what happened. Our Florida Keys drowning death lawyers can examine the facts of the case and help determine whom to sue and whether multiple parties share responsibility for your loved one’s drowning death.
There are many potential parties that could be considered at fault for a drowning death in the Florida Keys, but for the courts to hold them liable, there must be some relationship between the defendant and the victim. Usually, the only duty that people owe each other is to refrain from intentionally injuring them. This means that proving liability for an accidental drowning death requires proof of some further relationship, such as the one between a passenger and a ship operator or an employer and their employee.
Often, the owner of the property where the drowning took place can be responsible for dangerous conditions. Similarly, if someone falls overboard from a ship or boat or drowns after a boat accident, the owner or operator of the vessel might be responsible.
Individuals in charge of supervising people or keeping them safe could be responsible for many drowning deaths. For instance, a scuba instructor or snorkeling tour guide could be responsible if they failed to act reasonably to keep someone in their care from drowning or they provided them with defective gear.
Other potential parties that could share liability include gear and boat rental companies who provide defective gear, defective jet skis, or defective boats to renters.
Two groups of people that are often not responsible for accidental drownings are the government and lifeguards. Usually, the government has no specific duty attached to the situation, so they cannot usually be sued for a drowning death. Moreover, lifeguards are there to help but might not have a concrete legal duty to act. However, if a lifeguard undertakes to rescue someone and then fails to use the proper care or skill and the accident ends in a drowning, the lifeguard or their employer might be liable.
Compensation for Wrongful Death by Drowning in the Florida Keys
If your loved one was killed in a drowning accident, your family could be entitled to substantial compensation from the at-fault parties. The individuals or entities responsible for their death could be held liable for many of the expenses and damages your loved one would have been able to sue for had they survived. Additionally, your family can claim damages they now face because of the death.
Drowning death lawsuits often cover damages for your loved one’s medical care and pain and suffering at the end of their life. If they were treated at a hospital but could not be resuscitated, your family could be left with expensive unpaid medical bills. The fear and pain that your loved one experienced in their final moments could also justify claims for high pain and suffering damages.
After the death, your family might face lost wages, funeral costs, burial or memorial expenses, grief counseling costs, post-traumatic stress symptoms, lost companionship, and other damages. Talk to a lawyer about what these damages are worth in your potential case.
Call Our Florida Keys Drowning Death Attorneys for a Free Legal Consultation
If your loved one died by drowning in the Florida Keys, our attorneys might be able to help. The Florida Keys drowning death lawyers at Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind represent families of the deceased and fight for compensation to help them after these kinds of tragedies. For help understanding your rights and pursuing financial compensation, call us today at (866) 386-1762.