In our last post we discussed the process of filing a claim against a cruise line. This post will delve into settlements. There is actually a lot involved with settlements in any case. Upfront, however, please be aware that often times cruise lines will not settle without a reason. In obvious liability cases, the cruise line operator may realize that the odds are against them. Other times, companies may settle as a business decision. However, that decision depends on the injuries involved, vialibility of the legal theories at issue. At times, the public may think that because they read about a court settlement that the cruise line company will just fold. What they do not always realize is that many settlements dont even happen until hours and hours of work take place. Sometimes, the cruiseline companies may settle just before trial. Cases can even settle during a trial or before the case is presented to a jury.
If you seek to bring a personal injury claim against a cruise line company you should always hire an experienced attorney for your best chances of receiving a fair and just settlement. The maritime attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz PA are here to help. Our attorneys know the relevant laws and value of personal injury claims while representing cruise ship passengers and crewmembers that are injured.
The Basics Law of Maritime and Tips and to Help Your Case
Initially, if you (“Plaintiff”) are injured on a cruise ship, or if you are a victim of a crime like a rape or sexual assault on a cruise ship, you must be able to show that the cruise line (“Defendant”) was negligent. This requires, for one, that injury victim show that a legal duty was owed to him or her. The only legal exception to this rule is if the crime was committed bya cruise ship employee. Under federal martime law, cruise ship operators owe passengers a legal duty of reasonable care under the circumstances. Under negligence principles, a Plaintiff must then be able to show that Defendant breached their duty and that Defendant’s breach actually and foreseeably caused Plaintiff’s injury. Lastly, Plaintiff must prove thet natuire and extent of any injury or injuries. These are also referred to as damages. You should be aware that your prospective injury claim may be subject to various laws under your cruise ship ticket contract including the court where injury victims must file a law suit. Other claims that may be legally viable under state law may be barre just based on the terms and conditions of the contract. Therefore, you should also carefully ready your cruise ship ticket. The ticket conract or contract of carriage will have terms and conditions covering how and when you must report an injury on a cruise ship. All cruise ship operator contracts vary to some extent. However, they all contain important legal conditions that must be strictly adered to. Any failure to comply with the ticket contract may ressult in a waiver of your legal rights. For example, a cruise ship passenger ticket contract may also state that personal injury claimants have a one-year statute of limitations instead of the state law or other limitations of admiralty or maritime law.
If you were injured on a cruise ship, here is what you should do to increase your chances of a fair settlement. First, you should seek immediate medical help in the cruise ship infirmary and off the ship as soon as possible. You should also immediately report the accident to the ship security and safety officer or other crew member. You should get the names of all witnesses, phone numbers, take photographs, video, and anyting else to documents the conditions. Don’t be fooled into believing the cruise line is going to settle your case without legal reprsentation. If you do speak to any cruise line employee, you should be careful what you say and what you sign as it could jeopardize your case and your chances of recovery. Ask for copies of all documents and reports. Take pictures of any reports and request copies of all records that you can.
Additionally, it is important that you obtain the names and contact information of all crew members and passengers who witnessed your accident or have knowledge of the circumstances of the accident. If there were witnesses from a foreign land, you should obtain a written statement from them. If you were a victim of a serious crime, you should request to report the incident to local law enforcement and the FBI. Next, retain an experienced maritime injury lawyer for your case.
The Right Attorneys for Your Case
It is important that you seek advice of an experienced cruise ship accident and maritime injury attorney right away. The cruise ship and maritime lawyers at Gerson & Schwartz PA are here to help.Our firms lawyers are licensed to practice law in all Florida state and federal courts. Our Florida law offices are located in the heart of Miami. Our attorneys have 80 years of collective experience handling maritime accident cases. All cases are handled on a contingency fee.Contact us today at for a consultation at 1-877-475-2905.