It is common for many people to laugh-off the use of “legalese” and the implications that it has for their rights and interests, but forum selection clauses are one thing that people should consider carefully. Many of these provisions exist on the back of cruise ship passenger tickets or on associated documents. These clauses often get overlooked, but they can severely limit a person’s ability to bring a lawsuit against a cruise line after an injury.
Cruise accident victims may be surprised how difficult it is to get compensation for the harm that they suffered while on a cruise vacation. This complexity is part of the design of the cruise industry, which combine foreign registrations, maritime law restrictions, and draconian legalities to limit a person’s rights. The skilled Miami cruise injury attorneys at Greenberg Stone and Urbano have more than 130 years of collective experience in breaking through the legal barriers in order to get our clients the compensation that they deserve.
Forum selection clauses limit the courthouses in which a legal claim may be brought. These binding legal terms are included as part of the cruise ship paperwork. Essentially, by going on the cruise, the passenger is agreeing to the terms presented as part of the ticket purchase. It usually is combined with a restrictive statute of limitations that mandates that any legal action must be brought within a short period of time, often one year. This applies regardless of what the law of the state in which the action is to be brought states.
The application of the forum limitations has very real implications for passengers who have suffered harm on a cruise. If a person is injured, he has some period of time to bring a legal action. For purposes of this analysis, it is assumed a person has one year to file a claim. This means that the clock starts running when the person is injured. A person has to navigate the recovery process, along with finding the right attorney, assisting with the gathering of evidence, and preparing a legal action in the event that settlement discussions fail. The legal action then must be filed. If the forum selection clause states that the action must be brought in federal court in a specific jurisdiction and the case is brought in state court, it can be dismissed. This may be critical if the statute of limitations has run by the time the case is dismissed from the state court. A person would lose all right to bring a legal action if this were to happen.
When a person is harmed as the result of negligence on the part of a cruise line or its employees, it is critical to get the right legal advice quickly in order to preserve a victim’s rights and interests.
Greenberg Stone and Urbano Advocates for Those Injured on a Cruise Ship
The cruise industry has developed a myriad of ways to make money while limiting passengers’ abilities to recover compensation in the event of an injury. It is critical to get legal advice and representation from attorneys who know how to surmount the hurdles put in place by cruise lines. The South Florida cruise injury law firm of Greenberg Stone and Urbano has spent more than 30 years accumulating the knowledge and experience to take on the cruise industry. We understand how to gather evidence and present an effective case that results in our clients receiving the compensation that they deserve. Our dedication to our clients has earned us a peer-reviewed AV rating from Martindale Hubbell, which is the highest rating that a firm can receive. Further, the Miami Herald has voted us one of South Florida’s top-rated law firms. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or visit our website to schedule an appointment so that we can learn about what happened to you.