Cruise ship attorneys Greenberg, Stone, & Urbano keep a watchful eye on court decisions that potentially affect their clients. The case of Cubero v. Royal Caribbean Cruises, LTD. is of great interest to them because the recent decision issued by the judge may adversely affect their clients. Analyzing the decision prepares these seasoned attorneys to use this decision for their clients. The degree of preparedness and legal acumen sets these cruise ship accident attorneys from Greenberg, Stone, & Urbano apart from others.
The District Court for the Southern District of Florida recently issued a decision in the Cubero v. Royal Caribbean Cruises, LTD. case. The case comes before the court on a set of terribly tragic and unfortunate events. A man named Frank and a traveling companion set sail on the Royal Caribbean cruise ship Liberty of the Seas. The cruise ship left from Fort Lauderdale and steamed toward its destination in Cozumel, Mexico. Frank took several alcoholic drinks one day during the voyage. At some point in time during the day, Frank’s traveling companion took ill and repaired to her stateroom. Frank went back to the bar and continued to drink. The same bartenders served Frank before and after his companion returned to her room. Frank was intoxicated, and the court found that his coordination and judgment suffered because of his high level of intoxication. Frank sat poolside for a little while then got up and went to the rail. Frank fell over the deck rail and plunged into the sea below. The emergency call for man overboard immediately rang out because someone saw Frank go over the railing. He was neither depressed nor suicidal. The crew stopped the ship and began a search of the area for Frank. The search was unsuccessful. The crew determined Frank drowned and no one recovered his body. At the time Frank died, he was living with and caring for his two children. His daughter was severely mentally handicapped after surviving a horrific car crash and his son battled Leukemia.
Franks’ next of kin filed a lawsuit against Royal Caribbean alleging wrongdoing on several counts including negligence. The family also sought relief under the Death on the High Seas Act. The Death on the High Seas Act provides a family with means to claim damages based upon the wrongdoing, including negligence, of another. In this case, the other is Royal Caribbean.
The family alleged that Royal Caribbean was neglectful to Frank for failure to maintain or watch the security cameras on the ship. The court found that the ship’s duty went beyond simply watching video monitors. The court said that the plaintiff made a claim for damages against the defendant for overserving alcohol to Frank, and, knowing he was drunk, failing to watch over him to make sure he was safe. Also, the court said that the family set out a claim against the defendant for failure to make a reasonably prompt and thorough attempt to search for and rescue Frank.
Frank’s children claimed damages against the cruise line for a loss of nurture and guidance caused by the death of their father. Fortunately for the children, the court did not restrict nurture and guidance damages to only minor children. Rather, the court allowed the children to bring very specific allegations as to why, even though they are of the age of majority, they should receive damages for a loss of nurture and guidance for the death of their father.
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CUBERO v. ROYAL CARIBBEAN CRUISES LTD., Dist. Court, SD Florida 2016