Miami Yacht Accident + Injury Lawyer

Our lead trial lawyer Brett Rivkind has an international reputation for dedication and excellence. His hard work and success have been recognized extensively through awards and special recognitions.

With so many miles of beautiful coastline to enjoy, Florida is a haven for people who enjoy yachting, sailboats, and powerboats. As pleasurable as these vessels may be, they are not without risks. An idyllic day on the water may quickly turn into a catastrophic, life-altering event if boat operators and others responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of yachts and other vessels fail to use the appropriate care and skill.

The Miami yacht accident lawyers at Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind, P.A. can advise you and family if you have been hurt in an accident on a yacht. When pursuing compensation for your injuries, consulting a yacht injury attorney is a critical step to take.  Call our Miami yacht accident attorneys today at (305) 204-5369 to set up your free legal consultation.

Whom to Sue for Yacht Accidents and Injuries in Miami

Just as people who own and operate automobiles on land have certain duties to fellow motorists, passengers, and pedestrians, people who own or work aboard yachts or other pleasure boats have a duty to obey the appropriate rules for boaters, including state and federal safety regulations. When someone is injured due to a yacht owner’s failure to take proper care, the victim may be able to pursue damages for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering, among other damages. If a family loses a loved one due to the careless actions of yacht operators, the victim’s family may file a wrongful death claim for losses. However, finding the right party to sue in your case might be a challenge.

If you were a passenger on someone else’s yacht, the boat’s owner or any crew responsible for operating the boat should be held responsible.  Lawsuits against a boat owner can help victims seek damages for dangers on board, such as damaged decks or handrails that cause a passenger to fall or fall overboard, or for injuries from a crash or other accident.

Other claims for injuries on a yacht are often filed against the crew rather than the owner.  Yachts are often crewed by staff and crew hired out by private companies to help owners pilot their vessel and host parties and events on the ship.  These crew members are often contractually obligated to take care of the vessel and pilot it, meaning that they must use reasonable care when doing so.  If you were injured because of negligent staff and crew on a yacht, you may be able to sue the crew and the company they work for, even if the injuries occurred on your own yacht.

If your vessel was hit by another negligent boat operator, you can usually file a lawsuit against that operator or the person or company that owns that boat.  That means that if you are struck by a drunk driver on a speed boat or a fishing vessel that was being piloted by an inexperienced operator, you can sue them for any damages you suffered in the accident.

Some injury cases might also be filed against product manufacturers. Companies such as the yacht’s manufacturer or the manufacturer of other equipment, such as life rafts or flotation devices, might be responsible for dangerous designs or manufacturing defects.

Proving a Negligence Lawsuit for Yacht Injuries in Miami, FL

Typically, claims arising from boat accidents are based on “negligence.” This means that they require proof of the elements of duty, breach, causation, and damages. The plaintiff has the burden of proof and must establish their version of events by producing testimony and evidence. To prove all four of these elements, the victim must show that the crew or yacht owner owed them a legal duty (e.g., the duty to pilot the vessel with reasonable care or the duty to make reasonable repairs to keep the yacht safe).  They must also prove that the responsible parties breached that duty by failing to use the proper care and skill, and that that breach of duty actually caused their injuries and other damages.

In civil lawsuits, you must it must prove that it is more likely than not that the defendant’s careless or reckless conduct led to the injuries to meet the “preponderance of the evidence” standard used in these cases.

There are many ways that negligence could occur on a yacht, including unsafe speeding, overcrowding or overloading a boat, striking a fixed object or another vessel, failing to obey navigational rules, failing to keep a proper lookout, boating under the influence, or distracted boating.

Damages for Yacht Injury Lawsuits in Miami

When you sue for damages after an injury on a yacht or other vessel, you may be entitled to compensation for any economic or noneconomic harms that resulted from the accident.  This means seeking damages for medical expenses to cover emergency medical transportation, treatment, rehabilitation, and physical therapy for an injury.  If you missed work or acquired a disability that prevented you from working at the same job after the accident, you may be entitled to damages for lost wages or reduced earning capacity.  The lawsuit can also help you claim damages to compensate you directly for the pain and suffering of the injury.  These damages come on top of any damages for the medical expenses, and they are paid specifically to offset the physical pain, mental anguish, and emotional distress of the accident and injuries.

The death of a loved one can also be compensated.  This can help cover the cost of funeral expenses, burial costs, lost wages, lost companionship, lost household services, and other damages to help your family continue on after a loss.

Call Our Miami Yacht Accident Lawyers for a Free Legal Consultation

Victims who have been hurt because of the careless conduct of a yacht owner or another party responsible for the operation of a vessel should talk to an attorney about the possibility of taking legal action to seek damages from the responsible parties. The experienced Miami yacht accident attorneys at Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind offer free, confidential case evaluations. To set up a free legal consultation to discuss your case, call us at (305) 204-5369.


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Brett Rivkind is a lawyer that not only cares but also a lawyer that makes a difference. Whether its speaking in congress to help promote safety awareness in legislation or representing clients in court seeking compensation for their injuries, Brett Rivkind is passionate about his dedication toward both promoting safety at sea and helping clients in need who have been harmed at sea.

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Jury verdict obtained by Brett Rivkind selected to hall of fame of jury verdicts. This case is believed to be a record verdict of this particular type of case.

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