What Does a Maritime Injury Attorney Do?

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    What Does a Maritime Injury Attorney Do?

    When accidents and injuries happen at sea, the resulting lawsuits are governed by maritime law, which is why victims can benefit from enlisting maritime lawyers, specifically.

    Our maritime lawyers can tackle all aspects of your case, from gathering evidence to determining liability for your damages. Our attorneys can investigate maritime accidents by using a variety of tactics, such as sourcing surveillance footage, interviewing eyewitnesses, and pooling victims’ medical records. We can also explain some of the more complex aspects of maritime law and how they apply to your case, such as common jurisdictional hurdles and possible shortening of the statute of limitations. Our attorneys will also carefully track and calculate your damages due to a maritime injury so that you can request an appropriate amount in your claim.

    To get a free case assessment from our maritime injury attorneys, call Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind, P.A. today at (305) 204-5369.

    What Can a Maritime Injury Attorney Do for You?

    When accidents happen at sea, victims typically need guidance from those experienced in maritime law, specifically. Our lawyers can address injury claims against boat operators, cruise ship companies, and other negligent parties. We can also help victims prepare these claims by gathering evidence of an accident at sea, determining fault for an accident, ironing out jurisdictional issues, and identifying the right filing deadline for your compensation claim.

    Gather Evidence of the Accident

    One of the most helpful things our Miami maritime injury attorneys can do to help hurt victims is to gather evidence against the at-fault party. For example, suppose you were hurt on a cruise ship. Per the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act, all cruises that make port in the U.S. need to maintain surveillance systems on board. Because of that, it is possible that the ship’s security cameras filmed your recent accident. Our attorneys can contact the cruise ship company in question to request access to surveillance footage or subpoena it if necessary.

    We can also help victims obtain medical records from foreign hospitals if they sought care at a port along the cruise’s route. If anyone witnessed the accident, we can interview them soon afterward to obtain their statements.

    Determine Fault for Your Damages

    Maritime accidents are complicated, and several parties might share liability. This is true in recreational boating accidents and cruise ship accidents. For example, in a recreational boating accident, the boat operator could be solely liable. However, if mechanical failure caused the accident, the manufacturer of the defective part might share liability, which might present the opportunity for a greater recovery for some victims.

    Similarly, if a cruise ship crew member acted negligently or intentionally and hurt a passenger, the cruise ship company could be vicariously liable for the victim’s damages. In such instances, victims could sue both the individual crew member and the cruise ship company for compensation.

    Determine the Jurisdiction for Your Claim

    Cruise ship accidents and injuries are typically governed by maritime law, which can present some jurisdictional issues for victims. Cruise ships often include venue selection clauses in passenger tickets, specifying the court where victims must bring claims. Because many cruise ship companies are headquartered in Florida, that is where victims might have to file injury lawsuits.

    That said, if the accident happened within another jurisdiction’s navigable waters, the issue of where you file your lawsuit could become more complicated. Our attorneys can help you address these types of situations so that you do not bring your case to the wrong court only for it to be thrown out.

    Help You File on Time

    While 46 U.S.C. § 30106 states that maritime injury claims must be filed within three years, cruise ships often set even shorter filing deadlines by including certain clauses in passenger tickets, which are contracts between passengers and cruise ship companies. Using these clauses, cruise ship companies can require injured passengers to submit a written notice of their intent to sue within six months of an accident. Furthermore, cruise ship companies can shorten the deadline to file such compensation claims to one year.

    If you were hurt as a maritime worker and want to bring a claim under the Jones Act, you would likely have three years to do so.

    Regardless, after reviewing the specifics of your claim and the circumstances of the accident, our lawyers can determine the filing deadline that applies to your lawsuit. We can then calculate exactly how much longer you have to prepare and bring your maritime injury claim and proceed accordingly.

    Calculate Your Damages

    Paying close attention to your damages will also be important. When assessing the value of your claim, our attorneys will consider the various costs you have incurred. For example, if you had to be removed from a vessel through emergency medical evacuation, we can work to get those costs compensated in your claim. Other compensable damages typically include the cost of medical treatment on board the vessel and the cost of medical treatment upon a victim’s return home. Those injured as maritime workers can recover similar damages for an injury sustained at sea.

    In addition to considering your medical damages, our attorneys will also assess your lost wages due to the accident and your non-economic damages. Non-economic damages seek to compensate victims for their intangible losses, such as pain and suffering, caused by an accident.

    If a defendant was grossly negligent in causing a victim’s injuries, the victim could also receive punitive damages. Unlike compensatory damages, the goal of punitive damages is to punish defendants for their conduct and deter similar behavior from others. We can assess your total damages and the cause of your injuries to prepare you for your likely recovery from a maritime injury lawsuit.

    Call Our Maritime Lawyers for Help with Your Injury Case Now

    For a free case review from Rivkind Margulies & Rivkind, P.A., call our Miami boat accident injury attorneys at (305) 204-5369.

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