How Long Does a Miami Cruise Ship Accident Claim Take?

It is tragic and unfortunate to be involved in a cruise ship accident on what was expected to be the trip of a lifetime for you and your family. Unfortunately, according to recent statistics, the potential for fatal and injury-causing incidents is higher than you think. From 2005 to 2011, 16 people have lost their lives in cruise ship mishaps. Another 300 individuals suffered injuries while on a cruise, and more than 150 cruise passengers have gone missing from vessels. 

Like personal injury accidents that occur on land, you do have rights if you were hurt or someone close to you died on a cruise. However, these cases are very different from what you might know about Florida’s personal injury laws. Make sure to reach out to a Miami cruise ship accident lawyer right away since timing is one important factor that you need to know.

Timing and Deadlines for Cruise Accident Claims

You might be aware that Florida and other US states have a statute of limitations that restricts the time of suing after an accident. However, personal injury laws are different when an incident occurs at sea, so there are other deadlines to keep in mind. With some cruise operators, you are required to file a claim within 60 days after the accident. Therefore, it is crucial to act quickly to preserve your rights.

Settlement With Cruise Operators

When you comply with the procedures for filing a claim with the cruise operator, you will likely enter into negotiations to settle. There are benefits to settling since you will know the outcome of the claim and can get paid within a few days. Still, dealing with the cruise ship’s insurance company may be challenging since these companies are always trying to pay as little as possible to accident victims. 

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Most contracts for a cruise vacation will include provisions regarding what happens if you file an accident claim. In this document, there may be a requirement to participate in alternative dispute resolution to resolve the case. With arbitration, your case may be decided by a panel. In mediation, the parties engage in settlement discussions as guided by a trained mediator. Fortunately, ADR can usually be wrapped up in a day or so.

Litigation in Court

If your cruise ship accident claim is not concluded via settlement or ADR, you will have to sue the operator. A lawsuit can take several months or even years because there are many court-related activities before you get to trial. Discovery, depositions, motions, and other proceedings are likely.

Consult With a Miami Cruise Ship Accidents Attorney Today

There are many variables that affect how long it takes to resolve your claim, but you can trust an experienced Florida cruise accident law firm to move forward efficiently. If you were affected by cruise ship negligence, please contact Gerson & Schwartz, PA, right away to discuss the next steps. A knowledgeable lawyer will meet with you for a free case evaluation at our offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach, FL.

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