The cruise ship industry is active and vibrant in the state of Florida. Thousands of people board cruise ships, either as passengers or crew members, with the expectation of having a safe and enjoyable experience. Unfortunately, this does not always happen. In fact, many people wind up suffering serious, debilitating injuries aboard cruise ships. If this has happened to you or a loved one, keep reading.
Steps That Must Be Taken if You Are Hurt on a Cruise Ship
First, get immediate medical attention at the ship infirmary and get off the ship as soon as you can so you can properly assess the damage. Second, report the incident to the ship safety and security officer or other crew members. Third, get the names of any crew personnel and/or passengers who helped you and get a copy of any incident forms and/or reports that may need to be filled out. Fourth, take photos or record the scene of where your injury occurred. Why? Many cruise ships do not keep video recordings for very long, and this can significantly help your claim. Fifth, when you get back home, provide written notice that you intend to file a claim against the cruise ship, or its controlling entity, pursuant to the express time limitations provided on the back of your cruise ticket. Finally, contact a Florida cruise ship accident lawyer to set up a time to meet for a free case analysis.
Watch Out for the Special Rules and Loopholes Applying to Cruise Ship Injuries
You may be hesitant to speak to a lawyer because you don’t want the hassle or you think that you were at fault. However, we strongly recommend you at least speak to a lawyer about what happened. Why? Overall, a myriad of complex laws and regulations may apply to your case, and lawyers can take care of all of that for you. For example, federal, international and maritime laws may govern your injury, depending when and where the injury occurred. There is also a much shorter statute of limitations for taking legal action. In some cases, a victim only has six months from the date of the injury to file a claim.
Read the Fine Print
Many cruise line companies put contractual provisions on the back of your cruise ticket. In fact, it is in this fine print where they attempt to bind you to a shorter time period to file a cruise ship injury lawsuit. In addition, these provisions may include language about giving written notice of your intent to pursue a cruise ship personal injury claim. In addition to adding fine print to your ticket, many cruise line companies require passengers to sign broad waivers of liability before you are allowed to participate in certain activities and events. This is a common strategy aimed solely to limit the cruise ship’s exposure to liability in case you or someone close to you gets hurt.
Time to Take Action
If you suspect a cruise ship operator, or crew member, was negligent and that negligence resulted in a serious injury, then don’t wait to seek legal representation. The clock is ticking. Now is the time to contact the experienced cruise ship injury attorneys at Hoffman, Larin & Agnetti, P.A. We are here to help. Contact us today at (305) 653-5555 or fill out our online contact form to get your free, no obligation consultation today!