One of the perks of living in southern Florida is accessibility to boats and jet skis. As with any form of transportation, comes to the dangers posed by the negligence or recklessness of other boaters or jet ski operators. At the Peña Law Firm, we are a personal injury firm that handles boating, jet ski, and other watercraft accidents. Driving any vehicle can be dangerous, but an accident on the water comes along with an additional risk of drowning. In Florida, you can file a personal injury claim or lawsuit against the party that caused your boating accident.
There are many ways in which a boat accident can occur, including:
- Operating a boat or watercraft while intoxicated;
- Failing to properly maintain one’s boat or watercraft;
- Failing to obey the basic traffic regulations and channel markers;
- Overloading one’s boat or watercraft;
- Speeding through speed-regulated waterways;
- Failing to adhere to weather and other hazard warnings;
- Crashing into another boat or watercraft; and
- Crashing into rocks or other land formations.
Due to these different circumstances, the pool of potential injured persons can include passengers, crew members, or anyone within close range of the boat or watercraft. These people can experience some serious injuries:
- Spinal injuries;
- Head trauma;
- Wrongful death;
- Sprains; and
- Broken bones.
If you’ve been involved in a boating, jet ski, or other watercraft accident and haven’t received medical care, please remember your health and safety should be put first. What is thought to be a minor injury could turn more serious if left untreated.
Unlike auto insurance, Florida does not require boater’s insurance, though those who operate boats, jet skis, or other watercraft can buy liability insurance to cover any damages they caused to others. Depending on whether or not the boat operator has boat insurance, determines how to go about acquiring compensation. To have a valid claim against an at-fault boat owner, the injured person must be able to prove that he or she was injured due to the at-fault boater’s negligence. If the at-fault boat owner had insurance, the injured person would submit their claim to that insurance company.
In order to have a successful boat accident claim, you need to establish negligence, which has four factors.
- Duty of care for boat, jet ski, or other watercraft operators.
- Boaters owe others in the water a duty of care to operate their boat or vessels carefully and maintain it to ensure its safety in operation.
- The duty of care was violated.
- Your claim must show that the boat operator violated their duty, whether it was by operating a boat under the influence, talking on the phone, reckless operation, poor upkeep, or defects in the boat that caused the accident.
- The negligence was the cause of your injuries.
- Your claim must show that had it not been for the boat operator’s negligent actions or maintenance, you wouldn’t have gotten injured.
- You have suffered damages as a result.
- Due to the incident, you must show you suffered damages such as physical injuries, medical expenses, or emotional distress.
At the Peña Law Firm, we know how to handle a personal injury claim to get you compensated for your pain and suffering, including any medical bills, lost wages, or other damages. We believe you should not be financially strained due to an inadequate settlement, which is why you should speak with us before accepting an offer. We know how to build your claim and present the value of your damages. We know how to navigate through the insurance company’s paperwork and communicate with them on your behalf to negotiate a fair settlement. If the settlement is unsatisfactory, we will go to court to get you fairly compensated.
For comprehensive, professional, and, effective legal representation, call The Peña Law Firm.
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