Cruise ship accidents can leave you or your loved ones with serious injuries, emotional trauma, and financial losses. If this happens, you may be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party. Unfortunately, you might not get the justice and compensation you deserve if you do it all alone.
Therefore, you need legal experts specializing in cruise ship accidents, and that is where we step in. As Florida cruise ship accident attorneys, Eltringham Law Group has in-depth knowledge and experience handling complex cases. We will fight for and protect your rights at all costs.
What Accidents Can Happen on Cruise Ships?
Cruises can provide a delightful and relaxing time, making them ideal for vacations. However, you can suffer an accident or illness while on a cruise. Here are five cruise ship hazards that can threaten your safety while on a cruise.
- Slip and fall accidents: Wet and slippery floors, luggage in hallways, hidden changes of elevation, poor lighting, and defective stairs are a few factors that could lead to slip and fall accidents. These accidents can result in spinal cord injuries, broken bones, and even brain damage.
- Food poisoning: If the cruise staff doesn’t prepare food properly or mishandles it, you could suffer from food poisoning, causing severe medical conditions. Food poisoning could also stem from poor sanitation and insufficient food safety standards.
- Recreational accidents: Cruise ships are often equipped with recreational facilities such as swimming pools. Unfortunately, these recreational facilities and activities could cause accidents. For instance, you can slip and fall on slippery pool deck floors or drown when swimming.
- Assault: You may be physically or sexually assaulted by other guests or crew members. This could cause physical injuries as well as lifelong emotional trauma.
- Illness outbreak: Highly contagious illnesses such as the Norovirus can quickly spread on cruise ships due to the many people being in one place.
Who Is Liable in a Cruise Ship Accident?
Determining liability for a cruise ship accident can be complex at times. This is because liability depends on the circumstances of the accident. Generally, liability may fall on the following parties:
- The cruise line: If an accident occurs due to the cruise line’s negligence, such as failing to properly maintain the ship or providing inadequate safety measures, the cruise line may be liable.
- The ship’s crew: If the negligence of a crew member causes an accident, they may be liable. For instance, a crew member who fails to mark wet floors may cause slip and fall accidents and may create liability for any injuries and damages.
- Other passengers: If another passenger on the ship assaults you, the passenger will be liable for any injuries or damages you may suffer from the assault.
- Third-party contractors: Some cruise ships contract third parties to provide services like food service. Therefore, in the event of an accident like food poisoning, the third-party contractor will be liable for the injuries and damages.
What’s the Law for Suing a Cruise Line?
Generally, cruise lines are subject to maritime law— a distinct body of law that governs disputes that arise on navigable waters. Moreover, you’ll typically enter into a contract with the cruise line when you purchase a ticket. Many cruise lines have strict provisions shortening the time for you to make a claim and file a lawsuit, some as short as just 6 months from the date of the injury causing incident. The contract may also include provisions limiting the cruise line’s liability and specifying the law and forum governing any disputes.
However, the specific laws governing the ability to sue a cruise line vary based on factors like the location of the incident, your nationality, the cruise line, and the terms of your ticket contract.
If you or a loved one is injured or experiences other harm while on a cruise, you may sue the cruise line for damages, depending on the specific circumstances of the incident. However, you need to clearly demonstrate the cruise line’s negligence leading to the accident. Cruise accident lawyers can help you with this.
What Can a Cruise Ship Attorney Do for Your Case?
Our injury attorneys can provide legal representation and assistance to those who’ve suffered injuries on a cruise:
- Legal advice: We can help you understand your legal rights and options. They’ll advise you on the best course of action to take after a cruise ship accident.
- Investigating the incident: We examine the circumstances leading to a cruise ship accident. This includes reviewing documents, interviewing witnesses, and collecting evidence to build a strong case.
- Negotiating with the cruise line: If the cruise line agrees to compensate you for your injuries, damages, and other losses, we will negotiate on your behalf to ensure you reach a fair settlement.
- Represent you in a court of law: We may represent you in a court of law and advocate for your rights before a judge or jury.
Hire a Florida Cruise Ship Accident Attorney Today
If you or your loved one have been involved in a cruise ship accident, you may need an attorney to help you file a claim.
Cruise Ship Accident FAQs
What do you do if you get hurt on a cruise ship?
Your safety comes first. Get immediate medical attention if you’re hurt in a cruise ship accident, even if the injuries are not visible.
How long do you have to file a claim against a cruise line?
As stated above, the timeframe to pursue a claim against a cruise ship is usually shorter than the new 2 year personal injury statute of limitations set by the state of Florida, so act quickly to engage a lawyer.