The loss of a loved one in a drowning accident on Lake Okeechobee could be one of the most tragic things you have ever experienced. An accident leading to a loved one’s drowning death can be traumatic, and there may be questions about how the accident happened and whether someone is responsible. Working with an experienced Lake Okeechobee drowning attorney can help you get the answers you need and seek justice for the death of a loved one in a drowning accident.
The Lake Okeechobee drowning death and injury attorneys at Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind, P.A. represent victims who survived near-drowning accidents as well as the family of those killed in drowning accidents on the lake and anywhere else in South Florida. To set up a free legal consultation on your case, call our lawyers today at (866) 386-1762.
Investigating Drowning Deaths on Lake Okeechobee
Many drowning accidents do not immediately offer the families of the deceased the answers they are looking for. If someone’s body was recovered after they went missing, it might be unclear how they got into the water or what happened leading up to their death. Our attorneys can work with local officials to gather evidence and put together a picture of what happened, potentially finding responsible parties.
If the circumstances leading up to the drowning are clearer, our investigation can focus on collecting evidence and building a case against the responsible parties. People drown after boating accidents, waterskiing accidents, dock collapses, and falls from boats and ferries. If there were witnesses to the accident and there is someone to hold responsible, our attorneys can help build a case against them.
Whom to Sue for Drowning Deaths on Lake Okeechobee
If there was an accident leading up to a loved one’s drowning death, our attorneys are prepared to determine whom to hold accountable and take them to court to get your family the justice you seek. In many drowning deaths, the death is caused by some kind of mistake or error in judgment that led to the victim going in the water and drowning there. Determining who is responsible is often a matter of looking at the facts and the legal duties surrounding the situation.
In many boat accident cases, passengers and boat operators could be injured when falling overboard. A back or head injury during a boating accident can often lead to death by drowning if the victim is unable to get back to the surface after the injury incapacitates them. If your loved one was killed by drowning after a boat crash, the operator who caused the crash is usually held liable. The drowning death is a foreseeable result of the crash, and the person who caused the crash should be held accountable.
Drowning deaths can also happen because of dangerous conditions around the water. Broken-down docks and marinas can be a disaster waiting to happen. People who fail to properly install safety rails or ropes, or property owners whose docks and piers are dangerous or falling apart, could be held liable for any accidents that cause someone to fall into the water on their property. They could also be responsible for failing to warn the victim and potentially for failing to rescue them or properly provide life vests and rescue equipment.
Lack of Supervision
When you put your kids under someone else’s supervision near the water, you expect them to act as you would to keep the children safe. If a friend or other adult takes your children out on a boat, they have a legal duty to provide supervision and keep the children from getting hurt or falling into the water on their watch. If they fail to do so, you can often hold them accountable for the death of a child who drowned on their watch.
If a body is found in the water, police often question whether foul play was involved and whether the victim might have been murdered. Even if there are criminal charges for murder or manslaughter, you can still file a civil case against the responsible parties for a loved one’s murder. Even if the case was dismissed in criminal court or the defendant was acquitted at trial, a civil case for wrongful death might succeed because the burden of proof is lower in civil trials. Additionally, in cases where the death was not a murder but was actually an accident, a wrongful death lawsuit might still succeed because it is based on negligence and not criminal intent.
Larger boats, yachts, fishing boats, and party boats might have dozens of guests and passengers on board. If the conditions aboard the boat are not safe enough to prevent people from falling overboard, the owner of the boat might be responsible for the passenger falling overboard. Similarly, if there are no life preservers, life rafts, or rescue equipment for when passengers fall overboard, the ship owner might be responsible for the drowning. Especially if the victim fell overboard because they were overserved alcohol or even drugged aboard the ship, bartenders, hosts, and other parties might be responsible for the death.
Call Our Lake Okeechobee Drowning Accident and Wrongful Death Lawyers
If your loved one died in a drowning accident on Lake Okeechobee, our attorneys might be able to help. We can also represent you and your family in lawsuits and legal cases involved the death of a loved one by drowning in Lake Okeechobee. For a free case consultation, call our Lake Okeechobee drowning accident lawyers at Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind, P.A. today at (866) 386-1762.