This is the second installment of our two-part blog post providing key information that injured cruise line passengers should know about cruise injuries and their legal rights. Although we have provided a broad range of general information, our Miami cruise ship injury lawyers recognize that you might have more specific questions, so we invite you to contact us to speak with an experienced cruise ship accident attorney.
How long does it take to resolve a legal claim arising out of a cruise ship accident?
Each case is unique based on its own facts and circumstances, but our law firm typically resolves these cases in less than a year. While some cases settle within a few weeks or months, our goal is to aggressively pursue the best possible outcome for our clients. The best outcome does not necessarily translate into the fastest resolution.
What parties might be financially responsible for injuries that occur while I am on a cruise?
There are a range of parties that might be liable for an accident during a cruise that causes injury. Negligent conduct by the ship’s crew, builder of the vessel, cruise line company, excursion organizers, and potentially others can entitle a passenger to financial compensation. The crew and staff have a legal duty to ensure the reasonable safety of passengers on board a cruise ship. When passengers fall and damage their spinal cord because they slip on spilled items in the buffet line, employees that fail to clean up the debris might be liable. If a fall is caused by steps that are made out of slick materials, the manufacturer of the vessel might be financially responsible.
There are a multitude of companies that may be affiliated or otherwise connected to the cruise line against whom financial recovery might be possible. Sometimes a company that coordinates an activity or excursion might be liable if the tour guides are careless or improperly trained. The company that manufacturer’s equipment used for a recreational activity might be financially responsible if passengers are injured because of a product defect. These are just a few examples of potentially responsible parties. It is also important to keep in mind that more than one party might share liability. The company that charters and/or operates the ship or even the company that sold you your ticket along with any subsidiaries also might be a viable defendant.
What are common types of injuries suffered by passengers on cruise ships?
Serious injuries caused by accidents or criminal acts can occur anywhere on the ship, such as on stairways, slippery or wet decks, cabins or restrooms. Injuries may be caused by faulty equipment, poorly maintained facilities, or acts of violence committed by staff or other passengers. Injuries can occur while disembarking, getting on or off tenders, and even during shore excursions. Although the range of potential injuries a cruise passenger can suffer runs the gamut from minor injuries to catastrophic and fatal injuries, common types of injuries include:
- Head injuries (e.g. traumatic brain injuries)
- Broken legs, arms, wrists, and ankles
- Damage to internal organs
- Bulging and herniated disks
- Knee injuries
- Spinal injuries to the neck and back
What are some of the types of cruise line incidents that cause injury to passengers?
Although most travelers never expect to experience injury or illness during a cruise, some of the types of accidents and crimes that cause injury and that result in liability to injury victims include:
- Slip and falls
- Sexual assaults and rapes by crew members
- Medical malpractice
- Passenger overboard accidents
- Swimming pool accidents
- Product defect claims from faulty equipment
- Tender accidents
- Accidents during shore excursions organized or sanctioned by the cruise line
- Cruise ships colliding with other vessels or running aground
Why do I need to wade through the fine print on my passenger ticket?
While most passengers never bother to plow through the multiple pages of a passenger cruise ticket because it is loaded with a wealth of complex legal terms in small print. Admittedly, the language printed on a passenger ticket is not easy reading, but the terms and conditions significantly affect your legal rights if you suffer injury or illness. Many people miss important restrictions imposed under the provision of their ticket, such as a one year time limit to pursue a personal injury claim.
Greenberg Stone and Urbano: Seeking Maximum Recovery for Passengers Injured by the Negligence of Cruise Lines
If you experienced a serious injury on a cruise ship or excursion arranged by a cruise line, our Miami Cruise Accident Lawyers at Greenberg Stone and Urbano are prepared to fight for our clients. For over 130 collective years, our firm has assisted accident victims in personal injury and wrongful death actions across South Florida. We seek to obtain compensation for your tangible and intangible damages, including medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Our skill and dedication has earned us an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell and recognition as one of South Florida’s top firms by the Miami Herald. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or visit our website to schedule your initial consultation.